JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A truckload of care packages is ready to be shipped to Iraq. The family of Chief Warrant Officer 2 Earl Scott, III organized the drive days after he was killed in Iraq.
Scott and another soldier were killed when the helicopter they were in crashed in Tikrit, Iraq about two weeks ago.
The family tells First Coast News Reporter Monica Landeros that putting together the care packages helps them heal, and they hope it helps Scott's unit in Iraq cope with the loss.
Boxes of batteries and piles of snack were spread across tables in a large conference room at Watson Realty in San Marco on Friday evening as the group sorted out the items.
Among the group were Scott's parents, Earl, Jr. and Sandra.
"It helps me quite a bit. I've been grieving quite a bit," said Earl Scott, Jr.
Family and friends are working through the pain of losing the Mandarin soldier. It's pain they will carry for the rest of their lives.
"I know I won't have my son anymore, but it shows the love that comes from this city," said Earl Scott Jr. as he pointed to piles of items.
The items range from food to books. All were collected in the days following Scott's death.
Earl Scott, Jr. said U.S. Army officials in Iraq will disperse the items to Scott's unit.
"I'd like to really see their faces when they open it up," said Paul Swift, a family friend who showed up ready to fill to boxes.
On each side of the conference room sat pictures of Scott. They were two silent reminders of why the group turned out.
"I wanted him to be here, just in spirit. It's hard to look at," Earl, Jr. said with a sigh. "But I'm very proud of the service and my son. If figure, this is the least we can do."
As the items were packed away, Swift said there was something that was on everyone's mind: Earl Scott, III.
"He was so loved and he will be missed by us all," Swift said with tears in her eyes.
It will take several weeks for the packages to reach Scott's unit, which is why Christmas cards were also included in some of the boxes.
First Coast News