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HILL AIR FORCE BASE — A group of military wives in Utah has collected donations for their military ‘family' in Colorado Springs affected by the wildfires.
"They're family," said Dalyn Smith, whose husband is an airman. "It doesn't matter what branch of the military you are, it doesn't matter where you are, if you're military, you're family."
Many military families at Hill Air Force Base feel a connection with the community because of the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.
"Being faced with losing everything: it's got to be horrible," said Carol Theran, an airman's wife.
After Theran posted a message on a military wives group on Facebook, people reached out. Carrie Carleton's home quickly turned into a staging area for a relief operation this week. The project accelerated from a carload of supplies, to a trailer's worth.
They're family. It doesn't matter what branch of the military you are, it doesn't matter where you are, if you're military, you're family.
–- Dalyn Smith
"It just kind of snowballed from there," Theran said. "Let's take a road trip. Let's collect things. That's what we did. And it grew in the something huge."
So, the diapers, toiletries, clothes and blankets rolled in.
Some of their husbands are deployed right now, and they say this helps take their minds off of that. And as military families, they know what it's like to pack up and move in a hurry.
"I hate to see people suffer, especially people losing their homes," said Dalyn Smith, another military wife. "Just having to pack up the bag for three days and not knowing when you're going to go back."
They even collected items specifically for the firefighters, like protein bars, Gatorade, wet wipes and baby powder.
Civilians pitched in, and on base they got help from the Combined Federal Campaign, the commissary and the chapel. The 75th Medical Group donated medical supplies, and Outdoor Rec is lending them the trailer.
They've ended up with more donations than they can handle. If you still want to help with this relief effort, or any other wildfire emergency, they ask that you please make a contribution to the Red Cross.