Washington, DC – America250 is partnering with Operation Gratitude as part of its ongoing commitment to honor service in our nation’s Armed Forces leading up to our nation’s 250th Anniversary of Independence in 2026. As part of this collaboration, America250 will help ship 250 Operation Gratitude signature Care Packages as an initial gift of gratitude for those who serve in the U.S. military.  Representatives of the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission also joined Operation Gratitude for its Veterans Day volunteer Care Package Assembly event at the DC National Guard Armory in Washington, D.C. from October 26-29.

“The Commission and Operation Gratitude are aligned in our missions to encourage volunteerism and forge strong bonds between those who have served in the military and the millions of Americans whose freedoms they defend,” said Dan DiLella, chairman of the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission. “We anticipate this partnership will be the first of many to underscore the important role military service plays in our country leading up to our 250th anniversary in 2026.”

Led by U.S. Marine Corps veteran, CEO Kevin Schmiegel, Operation Gratitude sends 500,000+ individually addressed Care Packages to veterans, active duty military personnel, and first responders every year. This year, on Veterans Day, Operation Gratitude will engage volunteers nationwide to deliver more than 26,000 Care Packages to Veterans, including WWII, Korean War, Vietnam, OIF and OEF Veterans. Operation Gratitude provides civilians from every walk of life in America with a tangible way to show appreciation for military service through active, hands-on volunteerism. Through a common bond of service and by making meaningful connections in hundreds of communities each year, Operation Gratitude’s mission is to build bridges between civilians and those who serve.

“With more than 1 million volunteers nationwide, Operation Gratitude is uniquely positioned to make meaningful connections and forge strong bonds between those who serve and the citizens they protect,” said Kevin Schmiegel, CEO of Operation Gratitude. “During my 20 years in the military I knew service members and military families who felt disconnected from their communities and their civilian neighbors. As an organization, we must go a step beyond saying ‘thank you for your service.’ In building understanding, empathy, and ultimately bridges between civilians and service members, Operation Gratitude will help strengthen and unite our communities and our nation.”

In conjunction with this partnership, the Commission will honor the service and sacrifice of the U.S. military throughout the month of November. From November 1-November 30, Americans will be able to honor the military hero in their life with the America 250 November Salute, an online photo mashup generator, with America250-branded photo filters commemorating the service of veterans, active duty military and in remembrance of those who gave gone before us. Additionally, Chairman DiLella will join representatives of the Friends of the National World War II Memorial to place a ceremonial wreath on the National World War II Memorial this Veterans Day, in remembrance of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Officially known as the United States Semiquincentennial, “America250” will be the most expansive and inclusive milestone in our nation’s history. During the official commemorative period beginning this year and culminating on July 4, 2026, America250 has the opportunity to engage nearly 350 million Americans and millions more friends worldwide through engaging programs, educational outreach and signature events. More information about the Commission’s vision and approach to programming can be found in Inspiring the American Spirit, its report submitted to the President on December 31, 2019.

About U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission

The U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission was established by Congress to inspire all Americans and each American to participate in our greatest milestone ever—the 250th Anniversary of the founding of the United States. The Commission is charged with orchestrating the largest and most inclusive anniversary observance in our nation’s history. The Commission will work with public and private entities across the country to make America250 a once-in-a-lifetime experience for all Americans. For more information visit www.america250.org and visit us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

About Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude’s mission is to forge strong bonds between Americans and their Military and First Responder heroes through volunteer service projects, acts of gratitude, and meaningful engagements in communities nationwide. More than 17 years ago, in March of 2003, Operation Gratitude sent its first four Care Packages to deployed Service Members in Iraq. Since its inception, the organization has given millions of Americans the opportunity to express appreciation through hands on volunteerism and lifted the spirits of more than 1.8 million Deployed Troops, and another 1.1 million recruit graduates, veterans, military families, first responders and healthcare heroes. Corporate partners and grateful citizens from across the country donate more than 15 million “Wish List” and handmade items each year to fill the Care Packages. Through donation drives, letter-writing campaigns, craft projects, hands-on service projects, and other activities, volunteers are the heart and soul of the organization. For more information visit OperationGratitude.com, or follow us on Twitter at @OpGratitude.