Quilts for Local Soldiers and Vets

quiltEUGENE, Ore. — A Eugene woman is quilting her way into the hearts and minds of local veterans and their families.

Bobbie Sanford is her name and she’s the coordinator for the west central Oregon chapter of the organization, Quilts of Valor. She’s only been involved for about two years but the number of quilts she’s made and the hours she’s put in far exceeds the short amount of time.

High up in the hills of south Eugene sits Sanford’s quiet, unassuming home. Once inside though, the red, white, and blue is hard to miss.

“This brings such warmth into my life,” said Sanford.

To add to that is the noise of her sewing machine as she carefully stitches together quilts.

“The quilts are presented in person to our vets,” said Sanford.

As a part of the national non-profit, Sanford and other volunteers make quilts for combat soldiers and vets.

“We do this because we honor their sacrifice to the country. We do this because we want to,” she said.

Also, for a reason that hits a little closer to home.

“I’m honoring my son. I stayed, of course, stateside when he went overseas and he was deployed into Saudi,” said Sanford.

That’s why all the time spent quilting and thinking of every sophisticated design is worth it.

“This is what I like to do,” she said.

That’s why if you asked Sanford how many quilts she’s made and presented, she probably couldn’t tell you.

“Oh my goodness. I have no idea. Everytime I start to keep a journal of all the quilts I’ve made, I sit down and start sewing because I’d rather be sewing,” said Sanford.

But, if she really had to guess, somewhere between 60 to 80. Along the way somewhere between all those quilts, she made a friend who shares the same passion in Alaska.

“The more I learned about their sacrifices and saw first hand how they come home, it became more and more important,” said Linda Kau, a friend of Sanford’s and the coordinator for Alaska.

“We’re hoping that the quilt will honor and let them realize how much we appreciate them and provide them comfort,” said Sanford.

Sanford says they’ve presented about 100 quilts face-to-face locally and they are presenting a few this weekend at the First Church of the Nazarene in Eugene on Saturday at 1 p.m.

If you’d like to nominate a combat soldier or veteran or help with quilts, you can email Bobbie Sanford at Bobbie.Sanford@QOVF.org  for more information.