When Ame Frey, an online graduate student enrolled in the Master of Justice Administration program, heard that soldiers on leave couldn't afford to fly home for the holidays, she decided to deliver a little justice of her own. From her home in Kaneohe, Hawaii, Frey embarked on a feverish, one-woman campaign, giving her own money, soliciting donations, sponsoring fundraisers, and creating a clearinghouse for donated Hawaiian Airline miles, so that Hawai'i National Guardsmen of the 29th Infantry Brigade who were training at Fort Bliss, Texas, could spend Christmas with their families before being deployed to Iraq. In just seven weeks, Ame's "Home for the Holidays" campaign raised an incredible $76,000 dollars and procured 88 round trip tickets to and from the soldiers' homes in the Hawaiian Islands and American Samoa. Meanwhile, Ame's own husband, Marine Corps Captain Shayne Frey, spent his holidays flying combat helicopters in Iraq.
In an interview with a reporter from the Honolulu Advertiser, the thirty-year-old former Marine and mother of two said that, despite the fact that she couldn't have her own husband home for the holidays, that didn't stop her from trying to help others. "Just because you are in a situation doesn't mean you can't help other people. By making things possible for [them], I'm honoring my husband, my family, my children and God."
In recognition of her singular accomplishment, Hawai'i Governor Linda Lingle and State Adjutant General Robert Lee presented Ame with a Letter of Commendation. She will receive her MJA degree from Norwich in June.
email@example.com, January 2005
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