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'No one has ever become poor by giving.'

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- "Commitment to caring." If ever there was a slogan most appropriate to its campaign, this one is it. As you probably know, the Air Force Assistance Fund kicks off Monday here at Patrick and at the Cape, and the campaign will run through April 10.

Like we talked about last week, these are almost unprecedented times when it comes to the economic conditions our country currently finds itself in.

Some of you may be thinking something on the order of "giving any of my hard-earned money is the last thing I need to be doing right now."

Think again.

And please, don't think for even one second that I can't understand that thought process. It's just that we all know that no matter how tough we may think we have it, there's always someone else out there who is having a harder time.

It could be the junior enlisted Airman who is undergoing some serious medical emergency with a family member. It could be the down-on-their luck spouse of a former Air Force officer or enlisted member.

It could be someone you used to work with, or it could be someone you work with now. And it could be you.

Try as we might, we don't always know the day-to-day burdens some of our Airmen carry around with them on an everyday basis. And none of us can know from one day to the next ... one minute to the next ... what is just around the corner for any of us.

All we can do is do what we can to ensure everyone in our broad Air Force family, those serving now, those who served before us, and those still waiting to serve, have somewhere to go and somewhere to turn to when times get difficult.

We are not asking for much. If a few dollars a month is what you can afford, that's all you should be giving. Every little bit helps in ways you can't imagine.

Last year for instance, we were able to give more than $45,000 and our wing received more than $158,000 to use to aid Airmen and their families with grants, no-interest-free-loans and scholarships.

In short, you touched a lot of people who needed help. I have every confidence you'll come through again. It's just what you do. Every single day.

Maybe Anne Frank said it best: "No one has ever become poor by giving."

But they sure have gotten richer doing so. We're proof positive of that around here. Thanks again for all you do.