From Afghanistan, with love - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

From Afghanistan, with love

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BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

By Elizabeth Vowell – email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) – For soldiers stationed in Afghanistan, the thought of staying at a beach side casino may seem far fetched.  However, one soldier on leave from his tour of duty dropped by the Beau Rivage in Biloxi to thank the casino that helped him trade the desert sand for a Biloxi view, at least for a few nights. 

Beau Rivage Community Affairs Director Sara Miller said she had helped organize ways to help troops overseas before, but she had never been as touched as when she received an email from Sergeant Jason Lambert asking for care packages for his unit.

Miller helped organize a drive for the 287th Engineering Unit out of Lucedale, MS. They collected basic items, like wipes and deodorant, to send to the troops while they were deployed.

"This is a small way we can repay them for what they have given up," said Miller.

Thursday, Lambert met Miller at the Beau for the first time while he was on a 15 day leave.  He brought with him a plaque featuring his unit's picture and a few words of thanks. 

"Every night when I go to bed, and I can tell you when these guys go to bed, we say a prayer for y'all. So enjoy your time at home, enjoy your time with family and know that when you go back you have a piece of us with you," Miller told Lambert and another unit member as they presented the plaque. 

"She's taking good care of the soldiers over there," Lambert said.  "People don't realize what they have in the states when they go overseas, going through something like that. They're real fortunate in their living conditions."

Along with the care packages, the Beau will give unit members on leave the chance to stay at the hotel for a few nights. 

Lambert said even though it's a little tough adjusting from Afghanistan, it was nice to be able to come home to family and stay at the Beau Rivage. 

Lambert and his fellow soldiers are expected to return from their tour of duty in February, 2011.

 Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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