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CTM CTWS 2015 Winner Announcement for Website

We would like to thank our military community for their heartfelt response to Christmas Tree Market's recently concluded Celebrating Those Who Serve Campaign 2015. And without further ado, we are pleased to announce this year's three Christmas Tree Market's Celebrating Those Who Serve 2015 Campaign just ended, and we are overwhelmed with the heartfelt response from our military community. That's why we are pleased to announce our three randomly selected winners for this year! Our winners will each receive a 6-foot pre-lit artificial Christmas tree from Christmas Tree Market, just in time for the holidays!

Congratulations to:

  • Veronica Hunter
  • Kara Pieracinni
  • Michelle Subbert

Here are their inspiring stories:

Veronica Hunter and her kids are excited for her husbandís anticipated retirement next year. She also talks about settling in their permanent home, and how she makes the holidays special for the kids.

My husband has been active duty for 25 years! Through the years, I appreciate all the sacrifices he has made in the name of duty. He has missed so much of our kids growing up and many times has been away during Christmas. This year he will be here and it will be our first Christmas in our first home, which is so exciting!! Over the years he has tried to make the holidays as special as possible for the kids, even while away either for TDY or deployments. This will be his last Christmas on active duty as he will retire early next year. I want it to be special & memorable to thank him for everything he has done, not just serving his country but all he does for us. When people ask about why he joined he says it is because when you put on the uniform you have a pride in knowing you are doing something to serve your country and hopefully making it better for the next generation.

Kara Pieracinni talks about her husbandís 19 years of service in the Marine Corps, and his road to recovery.

My husband was medically retired from the Marine Corps earlier this year, with 19 years of service. The plan was to retire after 20 years, but combat related issues didn't make that possible. He was retired with 100% disability due to a variety of reasons, most of them combat related. He had a rough couple years, but he is doing his best now to get himself back to where he used to be and not let his demons get to him. I am extremely proud of his service and everything he has done for our family.

In her winning entry, Michelle Subbert talks about her husband Kevinís 26 years in service.

My husband is currently serving his 26th year with the US Navy. Three years ago we decided to purchase our forever home in Geneva, MN and the kids and I moved here to settle down. After moving 6 times in 11 years, we were all tired of the moves. It was a good decision for the kids but itsitís been very difficult on the entire family; especially my husband. He is currently stationed in Millington, TN and only gets to come home a few weeks a year. That is very difficult for all of us. My youngest two have spent most of their lives with daddy being gone and my oldest three have dealt with 11 deployments and numerous work-ups. My husband has sacrificed a lot being in the Navy. He's spent years, not including the past few, missing holidays, birthdays, and other celebrations that have been important along the way. I am extremely proud of him and the hard work and dedication that he continues to display. Thanksgiving will be here soon and he will not be able to come home this year so our Christmas festivities will be even more dear to us. We take time to visit some family but most importantly, the seven of us take the time to laugh, talk, and get to know each other again. I am so very thankful for all the opportunities that the Navy has provided for my family. We have lived in Japan and in several beautiful states in our nation. We cherish those memories and the limited time we get to spend with my husband until his retirement next fall. Thank you so much for this opportunity. God Bless the USA!

We would also like to share the heartwarming stories from some of our other participants:

I served from 1971- 1975 in Vietnam. Iím so glad I made it home alive. I lost a lot of brothers and sisters there, then came home to a country that didnít want me here anymore. With all the hate I felt from the US and the VA system, I finally almost lost my life. I was homeless and needed a lot of help. The VA done a little but not what I needed. If not for the woman Iím married to now and the Grace of God, Iíd be dead now. Iíd like to get the tree for my wife for her and God saving my life. Please help me show her how much I love her and always will need her in my life.

- Herbert M., TX

Julie is our daughter and serving with the USAF and deployed in the Middle East. We are very proud of her. She is married and has 3 children and very hard on her and her husband (a stay at home Dad). We are hoping she will be back home for Christmas!

- Catherine M., CA

I met my husband in Lejeune. He was the exact opposite of me. We had the same morals and compassion for people. He served in the Corp for 4 years and did two tours to Iraq and Afghanistan. When he got out he decided to become a police officer. He loves to help people. He has spent many times taking care of the homeless in his area of work. He always tries to lend a hand. He recently while on duty injured his hand. He hasnít been able to work as much as we are used. Heís currently on light duty and trying his best to provide for me and his 3 beautiful children. We donít have a Christmas tree this year. We have been looking to try and find one and this would be such a wonderful blessing to win. Not only would it make our kidís Christmas but would also relieve a little stress on my husband trying to find a way to get them one. No trees are not what makes this holiday but it certainly helps to bring family time putting the tree together. Seeing our kidís happy little silhouettes. My husband is a hard worker Police officer, proud Marine Veteran, an amazing husband and wonderful father. He doesnít like to ask for help, and always finds a way. I thought this might be a way to try and help him with our tree this year!

- Andrea H., TN

Let the men and women on the U.S. Military know how much we appreciate their service - share more of your stories with us for next yearís Celebrating Those Who Serve Campaign!

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