Marine Parents Come Together
I recently had the privilege of attending the annual conference for MarineParents.com. The conference was in St. Louis this year and I was invited to make the trip out by the founder of Marine Parents, Inc. I should mention here that I am not the parent of a Marine, but I do know the organization quite well. Tracy Della Vecchia started Marine Parents when her son was deployed to Iraq at the start of the war. He went back two more times before getting out of the Marine Corps. As the mother of a Marine in harm’s way, Tracey was desperate for answers. She wanted to get information, she wanted to find support, she wanted to know everything there was to now about the Marine Corps. But as she looked online, she didn’t find any organizations dedicated to helping the parents of those who serve. So Tracy took matters into her own hands and started MarineParents.com.
By SgtStryker | April 22, 2007
It started out as a website with information about her son’s unit. She got in touch with the rear party for the battalion and got information updates, she worked with the battalion commanding officer (who was in Iraq at the time) and she worked closely with the battalion Key Volunteers. Tracy, who is a website developer by trade, made MarineParents.com an invaluable resource for parents who were looking for information on their sons. It also became a virtual support group for mothers and fathers who were sitting in their homes across the country worried about their children.
As the years went on, Tracy’s dream for Marine Parents has grown by leaps and bounds. The organization has gone from being a resource for parents of one unit to being an official non-profit organization run by over 100 volunteers across the country. It is truly an incredible resource for all parents of Marines. There are messages boards and chat rooms for parents whose children have just gone to boot camp and support forums for parents whose children have just deployed. The organization runs a care package project to send packages to Marines overseas and a Gold Star parents project to provide support and comfort to parents who have lost their Marines. They have also grown to include local support groups, an online store and a project to help wounded Marines called Operation Prayers and Letters that allows people to offer prayers or send letters to wounded Marines.
Tracy and her organization is an amazing example of how one proud mother can make a world of difference in the war on terror. She is fighting just as much as her son fought, though she would blush and deny it if you said that to her face. You can visit the Marine Parents website at marineparents.com. Semper Fi, Tracy.