Fort Bragg, N.C. - Soldiers from United States Army Special Operations Command participated in Operation Toy Drop hosted by the 95th Civil Affairs Brigade, Special Operations, Airborne at St. Mere Eglise Drop Zone at Fort Bragg, N.C., December 3, 2020.
The 95th Civil Affairs Brigade hosted the event with assistance from the 4th Physiological Operations Group.
For the past 20 years, USASOC has hosted Operation Toy Drop, which donates the toys collected and then gives them to Toys for Tots.
Toys for Tots is a non-profit organization ran by the United States Marine Corps Reserve that distributes donated toys to children during the Holiday season. Toys for Tots program was founded in 1947 by reservist Maj. Bill Hendricks.
Soldiers who donated toys received a raffle ticket, which put them in the running to participate in the Airborne Operation the following day.
“We received around 500 toys from the Soldiers,” Master Sgt. Joshua Marquis, 95th CA BDE, Airborne Operations, Air Program Manager said. “Out of everyone who donated the toys, 165 raffle tickets were chosen and that is how we picked who got the opportunity to jump.”
“This event showed the generosity that exists not only within the Civil Affairs community but the USASOC community as well,” said Marquis. Not only did the Soldiers donate toys, some of the Soldiers who won the raffle gave their winning tickets to their junior Soldiers for the opportunity to earn their Chilean Jump Wings, he added. “It just showed the giving spirit of the holidays.”
Members of the USASOC community who participated in the event included Soldiers from the 95th Civil Affairs Brigade, 91st Civil Affairs Battalion, 92nd Civil Affairs Battalion, 96th Civil Affairs Battalion, 97th Civil Affairs Battalion, 98th Civil Affairs Battalion, 4th Physiological Operations Group, 8th Physiological Operation Group, 1st Special Forces Command, Joint Special Operations Command, 1st Special Warfare Training Group, as well as international counterparts from the Chilean Special Operation Commandos who are attached to 1st Special Warfare Training Group and the 82nd Infantry Division.