How has the war in Iraq affected you? To me, it is just something that I knew is going on but this 5-year long war hadn't directly affected me until about 6 months ago.

In March 2008, a colleague of mine, Scott Hager, was unexpectantly called to duty in Iraq. Besides working for a purchasing company based out of Colorado and having assisted me with a hotel design project in New York, Scott was a Sergeant First Class in the Army Reserves.

Although Scott and I had only met once, our phone repartee, filled with jokes and ribbing, made me feel as though we were real friends so when news of Scott's deployment happened, I was determined that we would stay in touch. When he left for his tour of duty, I found myself struggling for a way to stay in touch with him especially now that our relationship has shifted from a work friendship to a real friendship. Through our email conversations, I kept asking Scott what I could do, send, help out with? Reluctantly, Scott relented and wrote "Send music." One CD became two, two became five and soon I was sending five CDs every week. I could tell from the variety of music requested that these weren't just Scott asking or if it was, he had a pretty diversified taste in music. This got me thinking that maybe, just maybe there were other soldiers out there who would benefit from the gift of music. So, I decided to enlist my kids and the general public to see if anyone else can help us.

If you are interested in supporting Tunes for the Troops, please email tunesforthetroops@yahoo.com to get a list of CDs that are being requested from the US soldiers in Iraq. Included in the email will be where to send your CDs to us and, we will forward the CDs to Iraq.

It might not seem like much, but having something as simple as a CD from the Top 100 to listen to helps the soldiers feel like they are still connected to their family and friends stateside.

Won't you help?

Annette Jaffe

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