Operation Welcome You Home | Illinois

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Greetings For Our Heroes

Operation Welcome You Home
Messages to OWYH

Operation Welcome You Home Logo
  Thank you. God bless you for what you are doing to show our young men and women how much we appreciate them. I feel so incredibly grateful for being informed about your group. My daughter, Kalina, and I have been greatly touched by each and every homecoming we have been able to attend. Unfortunately there may never be another time that all of our military are on U.S. soil. It will always be important that "we" are here for them. Many blessings to you and all those involved with OWYH.

Sharon O'Brien

Feature Story In Glancer Magazine, November 2020 Issue CONGRATULATIONS!! Very exciting article Semper Fi!!!👍🏻🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸

Great article!! Hope some people read it, and work to help you in ALL that you do! - Bob

Wonderful article depicting all of your generosity and commitment. The world is a better place with you in it. Thank you for all that you and your organization do. I am honored to know you. - Sincerely, Colleen A

Bravo 👏🏼 🇺🇸❤️Love to you With joy and gratitude, Tammy M Great article. Thank you for all you do for our veterans. - Celia

Very nice! Cograts! - John T

Donna, Judi, Congratulations on this article . Job well done all year round. Have a Blessed Thanksgiving, and a Blessed Merry Christmas. Stay safe. - Kevin, Kathy F

What a great story! This is a testament to the great work that you and your organization do!! - Peggy C

Hi Donna! Really enjoyed reading the article about OWYH. I know your heart is in everything you do and many families and the community have wonderful memories associated with OWYH. The expanse of your giving is so wide and generous. There are few of us that can live up to this kind of legacy. This magazine picked just the right person and organization to epitomize the virtues of love, generosity and respect, not only to veterans and their families, but to the whole community. Congratulations! With much admiration, Alba

Thank you, all of you so much for your help this morning in Honoring WWII Veteran Donald Breen for his 100th birthday! Mr. Breen and his family were very overjoyed with emotion and so thankful for your participation in the parade! We at The Timbers were overwhelmed with the amount of support that we received to help us honor him! We really appreciate you! Thank you again for all of your help !!!

That was awesome earlier! I donít know how you got such a huge turnout on such a bad climate day but it was a great event. I hope it was everything Mister Breen could have imagined. Thanks for getting the word out!

Brian S

2020 Heart Of A Gold Recipient

Congratulations Donna and Jim! You are very deserving of any award. You do a great job I appreciate it as to so many others. You have done so much for us personally.

Thank you, and congratulations, Doug and Terry

Congratulations!! JudyB

I am so happy for you, your hard work should be rewarded more often. Thanks for all you do. Don C

Congrats. You deserve, Ric C

You are very deserving of this! Jerry C

Congratulations Donna. You deserve more than an award for all you do for our vets & their families. May God bless you Celia J

Congratulations on such a prestigious and well deserved honor. Patty M

Congratulations Donna! A well deserved award! Sandy N

Congratulations! This is a great honor and very well deserved Colleen A

CONGRATULATIONS 🎉🍾🎈🎊 Nobody deserves it more than you!!😷😎

You and your team are to be commended!! Semper Fi, Alan S

Congratulations - Well deserved! Pat Z

You are so awesome, my friend!! Did you ever believe that your dream would explode like this?? I am so very proud of you and Judi and Jim and all the work you have put into this. Way to go!! Kathy M

Many of us Vietnam Veterans have benefited from your help and support and we canít thank you enough!


Semper Fi...

Alan S




I canít tell you how much your thoughtfulness means to me.  Such a lovely surprise!!!  Thank you, thank you, thank You!!!
Canít thank you enough. Your thoughtfulness brings tears to my eyes.

George & Joan
Oct 2020

Dear Donna,

Please convey our heartfelt gratitude to everyone involved for the wonderful welcome home for Ricky Flores and the remembrance of our son, SSgt. Domenic Andreoni, USMC. You and your organization are commendable for the outstanding work and dedication to our heroes, those who return and those who give the ultimate sacrifice for their country. Our world is a better place because of you and others like you. My husband, daughter, and granddaughter were touched by your consideration, compassion and recognition of our son, her brother and her father. We will remember last Saturday always. Again, thank you from our hearts.

Colleen Andreoni


I just wanted to touch base one more time to express my gratitude and appreciation for everything you did organizing the 50th anniversary drive by for the Trevillians last Saturday. I honestly was expecting 3 motorcycles to be there and was absolutely blown away by all the bikes, fire trucks and police in attendance. Thank you so much for everything you do.

Mike Mural

Hey Donna here's a comment I got from Tim Arbulu about yesterdays mission.

Thank you all for the beautiful reception and Welcome Home procession. You and your team along with the Welcome Home Heroes folks made my family and I feel proud to be Americans who have answered the call to serve and were honored to do so. Om behalf of my fellow veterans and the Gold star Families of the Fallen, thank you for YOUR continuing service to our communities and our Nation. Semper Fortis!


Just a short note to thank you for your help in coordinating with my daughter, Michelle Gliniewicz, for the Birthday Parade on Fri. May 8. The event was a surprise and totally unexpected. I really appreciate your time and work in making this event happen. Now the whole neighborhood knows how old I am! Thanks again. It was fun. Have a good summer and stay safe.

Best, Don Huston

No special reason for sending this note other than to say "THANK YOU" for the personal sacrifices you have made for our country. Without your commitment, there would be turmoil and a lack of freedom. Because of you, we are able to live freely, each and every day, in this great United States of America. God Bless!

Kim Reese

Thanks for doing what you do, and to hoping we get all these folks home soon.

Scott Kohler

I gave my kids a great gift last night. Thanks for allowing us to participate.

(WH for USMC Shawn Downing)

Kerri Osmond

I want to Thank each and everyone for service to OUR country. I am really proud of each one of you. I pray for your safe return.


Welcome Home Heroes Task Force

Phyllis Bloodworth


Thank you so much for putting together Robert's Welcome Home. It was more than we ever expected. You are all great. Judy did a great job taking pictures! Everyone who was there commented on how nice it was. Once Robert was over being shocked, he had a great time.

Looking forward to seeing you at more events!

Cheryl and Bob Border


I just wanted to say thank you again to you and your wonderful team of people. I was truly amazed at the number of people who gave up their Saturday evening to come out for our family. I would also like to thank the Naperville Police and Fire Departments for their support and help.

The staff at Tommy Nevins, especially Kristy, will be thanked every time we go in there. That is a given.

You really give so much of yourself to make sure our soldiers have a a warm welcome. This is to let you know that you are very much appreciated. Thank everyone again for me.

Lorry Krawiec

Welcome Home USMC Brian Stamm 090812

I wanted to take a moment and say than you once again. That was an absolutely awesome experience. I was awe struck myself with the turnout and support that showed up. I cannot thank u enough for all that u do to organize such and event, not to mention 3 in one day. That is heroic in it own right.

Thanks Again,


Welcome Home 090212 Troy Clayton

We wanted to thank you for the amazing Welcome Home Event given for Troy Clayton on Labor Day weekend. It was truly spectacular and a day we will always remember and cherish. Friends, family members, and neighbors enjoyed the display as well. From the howling of the sirens and Harleys, to the presentations at our home, it was truly amazing and heartwarming. People coming together, many whom we did not know, to honor our service to the military these past 6 years, is such an incredible display of patriotism and pride in our country. It is proof that we really do live in the best country in the world.

It seems there is never enough time in the day to get everything done and the use of your free time to honor veterans like this is very much appreciated. If you can, please pass along our thanks to the other members of your organization and participants in the event. We will remember this for the rest of our lives.

Thank You & God Bless You,

Denise & Troy Clayton

Thank you for all you do and the entire Operation Welcome You Home team. My son, Kevin, recently returned from a tour in Afghanistan and is stationed at 29 Palms in California. He plans to be home for the holidays and I'm very happy that he is home and safe.

I just read about USMC Kyle Moser and am so moved by him and his story. What a wonderful young man. So proud of him and the courage he has. The smile on his face is priceless in his action trackchair. Thanks for doing what you do. You're a remarkable group of people and I am so appreciative to participate in the welcome homes that your team arranges with care and thoughtfulness.

God Bless

Susan McSorley


Your stories below have touched us deeply, especially since we have family serving in the military. We have been on several OWYH rides and will continue to support your organization.

Thanks so much for you devotion to bring this information to us.

Sue and Tom Pankow

092812 Welcome Home USMC Paul Gillig

Thank you very much Donna!! Paul's Welcome Home was way over the top. Please share my thanks with all of those that made my son's coming home celebration a very special one.


P. Daniel Gillig

11/25/12 Welcome Home Matthew Grabow

Just wanted to thank you and everyone else for such a great home coming for Matt! What a wonderful organization you have started. I was speechless and so touched by this.

Linda Treadway, Mom

God bless your never wavering commitment to bring these young people home.

Ironically, I watched the DVD last night of the day you brought our son Jeff home after a year in Afghanistan.

We'll never forget it.


Scott Kohler

Saying thank you does not seem to cover it. You and all of your volunteers are amazing people. You made Aaron so happy and for that I can't thank you enough. Everyone at the motorcade said it was something they will never forget. Please tell everyone how much it meant to our whole family. THANK YOU, ALL OF YOU.

The Mateski Family

March 16, 2013 Welcome Home

Hi Donna,

Mike and I and Mark want to thank you for the awesome day Saturday. You and your group put together an amazing welcome home for Mark. All that were there were in awe of the dedication and passion felt from you all. What an amazing group. Mark was deeply moved as were the other vets who were acknowledged and thanked. You are amazing in your passion and your generosity with your time, as I know you also have a job along with overseeing Operation Welcome You Home. I hope to meet up with you again.

Sincerest thanks,

The Dellorto Family

WH June 15, 2013 USMC Mark Dellorto


Mary and I wanted to thank you again for this past Sunday. It really was relaxing and we enjoyed the company. While each of us have endured or are enduring completely different circumstances, we are all still drawn together through a common bond, our children/family members whose lives have been forever changed. Through this, new friendships may form and for this we are so grateful. Thanks again and we will both be there Saturday for the walk.

Bob P

WH July 14, 2013 US Coast Guard Emily Kohl


On behalf of Emily, Donna, and myself, I would like to give you our profound thanks for the Welcome Home last Sunday. We will remember it for the rest of our lives. Emily is off to her new billet now. We wish you and those with whom you work the very best!

Terry Kohl

Event - USMC Kyle & Shantay Hester

Thank you so much Donna for the huge outpouring of love yesterday.  There wasn't a dry eye to be found.  Kyle and Tay were overcome with emotion... shocked to see how many people came out to support and thank them.  I have never seen Kyle speechless before... until yesterday!

Many of our uncles and cousins had served in Korea and Vietnam and they were overcome with emotion.  Thank you so very much!

Vickie Hanson & Family

Fallen Hero USMC Brand Meyers July 2013

We want to thank everyone from the bottom of our heart for everything ...everyone for what they did for our son Brandon.

God bless Wendy and David Meyers

Welcome Home US Army Brian Booth September 7, 2013

Thank you so much for your work organizing my son Brian's welcome home. It was way more than I expected it to be and I know Brian will remember that his whole life. Seeing the smiles on Brian's face meant a lot to me as well, as he came to see what serving the country means to a lot of people. I have just donated $150 to your organization hoping that in some small way it can go towards helping some member of the military that may be less fortunate than Brian.

I am looking forward to the pictures being posted, and again thank you and all your support staff for putting Brian's welcome on.

Charles Booth

Hi Judi,

I want thank you and Donna and all those who put so much time and thought into making Operation Welcome You Home such an encouragement to the veterans. Everyone I met from OWYH was so warm and friendly truly a caring group of people who can pass on thoughtful care to honor these brave veterans. What a valuable service Operation Welcome You Home is!

I was so happy to help on Saturday and just regret that I wasn't able to stay and assist the blind men. This was truly an amazing experience for me! Thank you again for giving me this great privilege.



Judi Your generosity amazes me and overwhelms me. I feel blessed to have ran into you and the organization that U represent at the post office last year. I promise to pay forward all of your generosity to others that cross my path in need. You guys are truly a gift from God. Thanks to all of you.

Proud Marine Dad Greg

Thank you to the greatest military in the world.

Phyllis Bloodworth

Thank you for service and God bless you all! And god bless America!

From Kimberly & Jerry Silhan

We will say a prayer for you all and your Families

Welcome Home US Army Thomas Johnson October 26, 2014

Words cannot describe how grateful and appreciative we are for all you did to Welcome Tommy Home this past Sunday. It was beyond belief and overwhelming the number of people that came out and gave him a hero's welcome. This is a once in a lifetime experience and something we all will never forget. I simply never imagined something so wonderful and uplifting every time I think about it a tear comes to my eye. Once again Than You from the bottom of my heart, you all are the Heroes!

Best Regards,

Nancy Johnson


Dear Donna,

A much belated thank you for all your hard work in putting Tony Simone's party together. I've attended a few of these. They've been great, but this one was special. I know it was appreciated by all.

Enjoy this beautiful weather.

Paula Boley(Tony's mother-in-law)

Christmas at Hines--2013

Hi Donna,

I want to thank you for the opportunity to spend the day with you and your group last Saturday at Hines hospital. It was an amazing day and I was truly blessed and felt privileged to be a part of it. I love what you do!

I was amazed at the variety of gift items you had to hand out to the vets; but I was also touched by the opportunities to connect personally with them. Few things delight me more than being able to reach out to a veteran who is struggling in some way. We know our Kevin is at peace and safely Home with the Lord Jesus in heaven - but these veterans still have battles to face.

Thank you for your organization and all that you do. And thank you to your husband as well, and your daughter Judy who so valiantly "lead the charge ", and yet was watchful and considerate to make sure everyone had a chance to participate.

We owe all our veterans so much, and it felt very gratifying to me to spend the day with people who truly appreciate them; expressing gratitude, not only with words, but with actions!

It was a great day for me, and Phil and I both look forward to future opportunities to participate with OWYH.

God bless you and all you do,
Cathy Clarke


Thanks for all the work you did in 2014 and continue to do for our Veterans! Its appreciated! Wishing you and your organization a fabulous 2015!

Kristen Jungles

Fallen Hero USMC Brandon Meyers July 2013

We want to thank everyone from the bottom of our heart for everything ...everyone for what they did for our son Brandon.

God bless

Wendy and David Meyers

Donna, You are a role model and provide a great service to our community.


Lee Christopher

Community Relations

Thank you sir for your commitment to our country. Thank you for giving me and my family freedom and safety through you and all the men and women who serve. Stay safe. Sincerely,

Cheryl Megan Joseph Jr   Hartley Smerz   and Anthony Eno and family.


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Copyright © 2013. Operation Welcome You Home (OWYH) is a not-for-profit organization, qualified as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. 1750 W. Ogden Ave, #2062, Naperville, IL 60567

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