Elementary Kids Send Care Package To Student's Dad Overseas

By KBJR News 1

December 1, 2011 Updated Dec 1, 2011 at 5:37 PM CDT

Duluth, MN - (Northland's NewsCenter) - The spirit of giving is in full swing at one Duluth elementary school. Second graders at St. John's have been collecting items to send to a special soldier in Saudi Arabia.

For one second grader, whose father is overseas, the care package was extra special.

Second grader Jake Langenbacher's father has been serving in Saudi Arabia for nearly a year.

"I'm not used to when was leaving," Langenbacher said.

His fellow classmates wanted to send him something special during this Christmas season.

"He needed air fresheners and some pictures and notes," Langenbacher says.

Today the children gathered to pack a gift box for Jake's dad...filled with candy, air fresheners, hand written cards ...and much requested, "soft" toilet paper.

While filling the care package, the second graders were surprised by a visit from Army Captain Dan Elnes, who is on a two week leave from his tour in Afghanistan.

Students asked Captain Elnes questions about what it's like being a soldier so far from home and what care packages mean to those serving overseas.

"It's really nice to open them and specifically the letters and the sentiment from back home is really nice. Of course the amenities are nice to get, but it's cool to get the touch of home," Captain Elnes said.

Jake misses his father and knows this package from his classmates will mean a lot to his dad

"Be happy and he really needed stuff from over here," Langenbacher says.

A gift that's sure to warm a soldier's heart this holiday season.

Jake said his dad will be home for Christmas this year...and that's the gift "he's" most grateful for.

Written for the web by Danyel Piecek.