CAMP BAHARIA, Iraq(Jan. 27, 2007) – A letter from a loved one sprayed with perfume; a drawing from a young child; an envelope bearing the first glimpse of a new-born are items Marines desire to receive, lifting their spirits and bringing home a memory away.
Marines anxiously await letters and packages to fuel them with the motivation to carry on while home is far away and out of reach to the leathernecks in Al Anbar Province, Iraq.
All of the responsibility for delivering these bits of home for an entire battalion rest solely on the shoulders of one Marine, Lance Cpl. Anthony S. Brambilla, a 20-year-old administrative clerk serving with 1st Battalion, 24th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6, from Warren, Mich.
“Brambilla has been an outstanding Marine. He handles the morale and correspondence from home, from the people we love, and the strangers that are supporting us,” said Sgt. Jesse T. Falke, a 27-year-old battalion supply administration chief from Carrollton, Mo. “He is the one coordinating all of that getting to us and that is outstanding. He has gone way above and beyond his call of duty.”
He took over a job most Marines would shy away from, made it his own and made the best of it.
“This is a big responsibility and it was a lot to handle in the beginning,” said Brambilla, a 2004 graduate of De La Salle Collegiate High School in Warren, Mich. “I wasn’t sure if I would be able to handle it all. I knew I just had to stick with it and work pretty hard.”
He is on the job no matter what the weather is like to ensure Marines receive their packages. He waits outside in the rain and cold for Marines to pick up packages from various companies.
“I know it makes these Marines happy to get mail and that’s my motivation to work so hard,” he added.
Marines look forward to opening their packages when returning from patrols. It helps fuel them for another day in Fallujah, said Lance Cpl. Zhen P. Chan, a 23-year-old rifleman from Buffalo, N.Y.
“When you get back from a mission and you have a letter from home, it cheers you up knowing that people care about you and what you are doing over here,” said Chan. “It shows that we have a lot of support back home.”
“I think Brambilla is doing a fantastic job. He plays a part in that extra push we get from receiving mail,” he added.
He looks forward to brightening a Marine’s day with a package.
“When I tell Marines they have a box and I see their face light up it makes all the hard work worth it,” Brambilla said. “When a Marine comes up to me and I know he is having a bad day, I can help improve his day by letting him know that he got a package from home.”
He is revered as a great all-around Marine by those that serve with him back in the United States.
“He has always been a great Marine and he continues to show it doing a job outside of his military occupational specialty,” said Sgt. Paul D. Garwood, a 34-year-old battalion supply chief from Detroit.
The mission of transitioning authority from the American military to the Iraqi is supported in more ways than one, and they don’t all have to do with directly engaging the enemy. Morale is just as important to successful completion of the mission as artillery fire, aggressive patrolling and making connections with the Iraqi Security Forces. Brambilla does his best every day to stoke the fire in the hearts of warriors with words and thoughts from home. SEND YOUR SUPPORT NOW-GO TO WWW.ANYSOLDIER.COM