2015 Marine Corps Christmas Toy Drive was a Success!

Thank you so much for your contribution to the 2015 Secret Santa Foundation benefiting dependents of the Camp Pendleton First Marine Logistics group. Your support is greatly appreciated. Spirits of the participants were very high and they were, as always, truly grateful.

This year, we had funds to provide primary toys for 350 children from 16 different units of the First Marine Logistics Group.

We heard some great stories I would like to share with you:

  • One unit returned just a week before Christmas, after a 7 month deployment. Thanks to Secret Santa Foundation, they had toys under the tree as they came back as well as a Homecoming -- a Merry Christmas indeed!
  • One unit bought 12 Diaper Genies (the thing you put dirty diapers in to prevent the yucky odors) and swaddler size diapers. Their unit is had scheduled a huge baby shower just before Christmas for all of the first time moms.
  • And here is the best story of all (Tissue Alert): One unit, that has been deployed for quite a while and could not be home for Christmas, had a secret mission. Moms and families didn't know it, but the deployed Dads shopped for gifts for their families. Santa showed up at their homes on Christmas Eve to deliver a present signed "Merry Christmas, Love, Dad" to each of their kids. Is that too cool, or what? They were able to surprise and cherish their families despite the distance between them.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to each and every one of you. Please take just a moment to reflect on the fact that there are some really happy families out there because of your generous support.

We're providing more than just toys -- this is a way to make our service members' holiday celebrations more joyful and inclusive, despite the separation from their loved ones. As one of the Generals put it:

You have no idea the difference in morale your program has meant to the troops over here. We feel like we were able to reach out and touch our families and were able to provide some joy for our own children. It is hard to choose between our commitment to our country and our commitment to our families. The Secret Santa Foundation toy drive helps us to feel as if we are doing both.

Semper fi, Marines -- We've got your back! Thank you for your service and your families' sacrifice for our safety and that of our country.

Terry Racciato
Founder, Secret Santa Foundation Toy Drive

Here is a picture of some of the shoppers from Headquarters Regimen, with the toys we purchased behind them.

2015 Racciatto family Secret Santa toy drive

2015 Marine Corps Christmas Toy Drive

American serviceman and sonThe children of the 1st Marine Logistics Group, out of Camp Pendleton CA are once again looking forward to Christmas and Santa and family, and all the fun and joy that the season brings.

Every child should be able to have a great Christmas morning opening presents from Santa. But some of our military families will not experience that joy unless we give them a little help.

Brigadier General Broadmeadow Certificate of Appreciation

"Certificate of Appreciation Presented to Mrs. Terry Racciato...We express our sincerest gratitude for your Secret Santa Foundation's contribution of toys and furniture in support of the Marines, Sailors and family members of the 1st Marine Logistics Group. The 562 children who received the gifts had a wonderful holiday season because of your Foundation's efforts and generosity. Again, thank you!!"

J.J. Broadmeadow, Brigadier General, U.S. Marine Corps, Commanding General, 1st Marine Logistics Group, December 25, 2011

Marine Corps Certificate of Commendation

"Commanding Officer Combat Logistics Regiment-1 takes pleasure in commending Racciato Family and Secret Santa Foundation for outstanding achievement in the performance of their duties while supporting the Marines, Sailors and families of Combat Logistics Regiment 1, 1st Marine Logistics Group, I Marine Expeditionary Force from 1 December 2011 to 31 December 2011...Your spirit of giving and joy of helping others has indeed spread throughout the entire regiment and your efforts have made a significant impact upon our families. The Racciato family's exceptional professionalism, initiative, and loyal dedication to duty reflected great credit upon them and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Marine Corps."

J.C. Caley, Colonel, U.S. Marine Corps, February 27, 2012