Patriotic Youngster Surprises Airman with Christmas Cookies

During the holiday season you hear over and over again that it's better to give than to receive. While this saying is sweet, many of us (including myself) truly like the receiving part — seriously, who doesn't love getting presents? But Reddit user slayfire122 may have convinced me that giving is just as gratifying.

More on Yahoo: Mystery 'Tips for Jesus' Tipper Identified in NYC

Slayfire122 is Charles, a crew chief general mechanic for the C-5 Galaxy aircraft at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, California. After returning to his dorm room at the end of his shift on Thursday evening, he found a surprise package on his military-issue twin bed. A box, filled with cookies, with a note attached written by a local elementary school student named Dalton.

Photo by: Slayfire122/imgur

Photo by:Slayfire122/imgur

Photo by: slayfire122/imgur

The card reads:

Dear Soldier,
Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and thank you for ceping us safe.

Photo by: Slayfire122/imgur

In his post, Charles writes that the present brought a tear to his eye, especially because he won't be home for Christmas this year.

More on Yahoo Shine: You’ll Be Inspired by Paul Walker’s Random Act of Kindness for a Military Couple

But he wasn't the only airman to receive a sweet surprise. Dalton's letter is part of Operation Cookie Drop, a holiday tradition in the Travis Air Force Base area that gathers volunteers in the community to provide hundreds of boxed treats wrapped in ribbon to the 900 single airmen and airwomen who live in the base's dorms.

Last Thursday morning, about 950 dozen cookies were dropped off at the base by volunteers. (One intrepid baker made 102 dozen!) Then, a second group sorted the 10,000 cookies into boxes, making sure to provide the soldiers with a variety of flavors, including chocolate chip, oatmeal, sugar, and frosted. Students at the two elementary schools on base wrote personal, handwritten letters expressing their gratitude and appreciation that were then attached to the presents. While the soldiers were out of their rooms, first sergeants delivered the homemade delicacies to the lucky military men and women, some of whom are away from home for the holidays for the first time.

"It's very important to make a connection between the community and the troops because we are their families when they're not at home," Jennifer Castilllo, center manager at Travis AFB, tells Yahoo Shine. "It's a beautiful surprise for the people who are new to the base." And an inspiring one at that. 

More on Yahoo Shine:
Holiday Cut-Out Cookies
25 Days of Christmas: A Shopping Guide
43 Reasons the Holidays Will Make You a Happier Human