Area residents can drop off cards to the troops at the offices of a local senator. 

State Sen. James L. Seward, R-Oneonta, announced that his three district offices will serve as drop off points for holiday cards to be sent to service members as part of the American Red Cross 2013 Holiday Mail for Heroes program. 

“Sending a holiday card to a serviceman or woman is a simple, yet warmhearted way to deliver a personal thank you for the sacrifices they make to defend our freedoms year-round,” Seward said in a media release. “I am extremely pleased to take part in this program and privileged that I can help facilitate this effort.” 

Holiday cards may be dropped off at any of Seward’s three district offices, including locally at 41 S. Main St. in Oneonta. Cards must be dropped off by Thursday to ensure their delivery. 

Red Cross volunteers across the United States and on military installations overseas sort and deliver the cards throughout the holiday season. The Red Cross has received and distributed more than 6.5 million cards for members of the U.S. Armed Forces, veterans and their families since the program started in 2006. 

“It just takes a moment to sign a card to share your appreciation for the sacrifices members of the military community make,” said interim Community Executive for the American Red Cross of the Mohawk Valley Rich Hajeris. “You say thanks, and we’ll do the rest.” 

In order to take part, address the interior of the car with a generic greeting such as, “Dear Service Member, Veteran, or Military Family Member” and sign the card. Cards should not contain glitter, envelopes should not be sealed, and no personal notes or photos should be included. 

“While you are out doing your holiday shopping, why not pick up a few cards and drop them off at one of my offices prior to Dec. 5,” Seward said. “The Red Cross and I will be sure they arrive in time to provide some hometown holiday cheer to our men and women in uniform.”

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