MAHONING TOWNSHIP -- Dennis Yenser is busy helping chop down Christmas trees in Carbon County. The tree farm owner says several hundred already left, en route to military families this holiday season.
"All the growers in the area help us out, they contribute trees. It’s a state program. We loaded 315 trees on the trucks this morning," said Yenser.
For the past nine years, Yenser’s Tree Farm has been helping the Trees for Troops program, loading up trucks with holiday cheer and shipping them to military bases across the country.
Yenser, a Vietnam Vet himself, says it’s the least he can do.
"They come back, some of them have problems, some have injuries. We lost so many and this is just a way we can give back,” said Yenser.
Over the past nine years, Yenser’s Tree farm has helped donate thousands of Christmas trees to military families. They say the Trees for Troops program couldn’t have been such a big success without the community’s help.
"We got the flyer for the Trees for Troops and we just think it’s a tremendous fundraiser for the families," said Barbara Carroll of Jim Thorpe.
Carroll says her daughter Nicole’s elementary school has collected money for this program, a cause her third grader was excited to help with.
"The big families of our troops make big sacrifices for us,” said 9-year old Nicole Carroll.
Charles Wehr of Lehighton says his wife’s father was a career man in the Navy and that’s why he also donated to Trees for Troops, hoping to send this message to a military family.
"That they should have a happy holiday and keep up the good work,” said Wehr.
Trees for Troops organizers hope to deliver more than 17,000 trees to troops from now until mid-December.