COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS - Talk to anyone who's served in the military overseas, and they'll tell you there's nothing better than receiving a package from home, and not just at Christmas time. A Utah veteran is sending a lot of packages to our troops - and he's doing it with the help of coffee drinkers everywhere.
On another busy day in Carl Churchill's basement, he, along with his wife Lori and daughter Denai, are boxing up bags and bags of coffee and hot chocolate that customers have ordered from their website.
Before he retired, Churchill spent 21 years in the military, serving all over the world.
"I've been all through Central America…all through the Balkans, Croatia, Bosnia...and then of course, Iraq, Saudi Arabia…" Churchill said.
During his time as a soldier, he drank a lot of coffee.
"Not all of them were good coffee," he said. "And that's kind of what drove me to LockNLoad Java."
He opened LockNLoad Java a year ago. The concept is simple: when you place an order for "Warrior Select," "Double Barrel Black" and other coffee types, you can also make a donation that will provide coffee for troops anywhere in the world.
You can order it and designate it for a specific unit, so if there's somebody you know that's deployed overseas, like one of the Utah National Guard units," Churchill said. "Or you can say just send it to a random unit."
Based on the responses and photos he's receiving from the troops - some in very remote areas - he's definitely onto something.
"What they're saying is thank you for what you're doing, thank you for caring," he said.
Though only a year old, LockNLoad has more than a 1,000 customers, and the business is growing. Churchill's spend up to 80 hours a week packing and shipping items from their Cottonwood Heights basement, but there's a satisfaction that they're making troops far away from home feel just a little bit better.
"It's cold in Afghanistan right now in the mountains, so it makes a difference,"
With every order, LockNLoad also makes a donation to seven different military charities. Churchill hopes to get out of the basement someday and open up retail stores near military bases.