I’m sure that one of you knows someone or has personally experienced a military deployment. As a former military wife with three small boys and a princess coming, I personally know how hard it is to watch someone who you love so dearly, the one who supports your family, your best friend walk away from his life to quite possibly give it to his country. These moments are very precious. Some of these moments could be the last ones that a family has of their son, daughter, husband, wife, daddy or mommy when they are leaving on a deployment, especially to a war zone.
According to Lieutenant General James J. Lovelace, the Army’s director of operations, he estimates that 75 percent of the active-duty Army of about 520,00 troops has served at least one overseas tour since September 2001. Of those, an estimated 100,000 have already served two or more tours during the same period.
Those numbers, our heart and love for our profession and art as photographers, our being as mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters of our finest American Citizens is EXACTLY why I founded Operation: Love ReUnited. OpLove, as we refer to the foundation as short, is a group of over 100 photographers across the nation and a few even overseas, who have come together to give back to the ones who ask for nothing, but to come home. We offer deploying/deployed families the opportunity to capture quite possibly some of the most important times in their lives on film…..
“Saying Goodbye” or “Come Home Soon”, and “Welcome Home.”
We agree to waive our session fees and capture touching, emotional moments of these special families in their hardest time and at their happiest. We arrange an easy to store and carry 4×6 album of the images and send them overseas as a gift to the family to remind the deployed soldier of the reason he or she is doing what they are, for this fine country and it’s citizens, and their beautiful families. Many of the photographers offer additional gifts or discounts, some packages valuing in at over $700. Nicole Ryan Photography will be personally giving each family 2 4×6 albums one for the spouse deployed and one for e the family waiting for them to come home.
Since the founding of the program in September 2006, we have helped many, many families from all corners of the nation. If a family happens to hear about the program in midst of a deployment, we treat a session much like one before they depart from each other- but send the album over as a surprise. When the soldiers come home we travel to the airport where they are being reunited with their families, many of their actually MEETING their babies for the first time! The reunions are so emotional most spouses who DO remember their cameras, forget they are even holding them.
Please help us spread the word.
Please visit our site to be touched by these amazing images of the fighters of this country at http://www.oplove.org.
And if you are stationed here at Ft Gordon and are soom to experiencing a deployment or a return home. CALL ME NOW to schedule even if its a couple months in advance!. I have a few slots available for these special sessions and would like to help as much as possible.