RALEIGH, N.C. (12/3/10)--As the saying goes, one good turn deserves another. When local students took part in State Employees CU’s (SECU) Support the Troop campaign little did they know that their example of good citizenship would be met with such heartfelt appreciation from one soldier. The Raleigh, N.C.,-based credit union organized the effort to collect supplies for care packages and send messages of appreciation to North Carolina soldiers serving in the Middle East. In Surry County, 35 schools, organizations and government agencies took part in the project filling 33 boxes, collecting $277 and accumulating 2,000 cards and letters (Mount Airy News Nov. 30). Sgt. Gregory Dillon, who is deployed aboard the USS Kearsarge in the Middle East, was touched by the gesture. He felt the care packages and the warm messages from Dobson Elementary School second grade class were just what his fellow troops needed so far from home. Dillon looked up the school and sent the class an e-mail of thanking them for their efforts. Thus began a correspondence between Dillon and the class. Dillon shared pictures of himself, his unit and his ship with the students. The students sent a class picture to Dillon. Leigh Brady, SECU senior vice president of education services, said it was gratifying to see the students receive positive feedback for their good citizenship. “The students are learning how important is it to recognize those who serve and protect our country in such a fine manner,” Brady said. “Because of SECU’s existing relationship in serving North Carolina’s public schools, we felt getting school children involved would be a great opportunity for them to be part of this project. These students are seeing firsthand the positive impact of their handwritten thank you letters. What they did made such a big difference.” To read the Mount Airy News’ account of the story, use the link.