We support our troops

How do you thank a Veteran?

That’s a question I thought long and hard about during my seven years working with Marine Corps Recruiting Command. To be perfectly clear, I never served. I never put on a uniform, picked up a weapon or stood a post.

I worked for the Marine Corps' long time advertising agency JWT. I was the Creative Director. The guy who comes up with the ideas for the recruiting campaigns like this one, and this one. Prior to that, I worked on advertising for brands like Coke, Ford, Coffee-Mate and New Holland. But working with the Marines was different. It was… meaningful.

I spent time with poolees, recruits, Colonels and Commandants. I travelled the country for three months with the Silent Drill Platoon. I went to OCS, Parris Island, the Pentagon and more Marine Corps Birthday Balls than most Marines. I met some of the finest people on the planet – the men and women who serve and their families.

I admit it. I said “thank you for your service” from time to time. Especially when meeting a Marine Corps Veteran. It felt trite though. A bit of a throwaway. It was meant with the best intention but it always fell a bit... short.

That’s why I created ZZZ Bears.

A “thank you” covered in fur, wrapped in the same camouflage that mom or dad wears, designed specifically to ease the nighttime anxiety of military children.

What I'm most proud of is our partnership with TAPS to provide Sgt. Sleeptight teddy bears to children who have lost a parent in the line of duty.

I never served

picked up a rifle.

or stood a post.

But I’m giving back the only way I know how.

I know it’s not enough. Not nearly enough. But it’s a start.

Thank you for reading.

Justin

 

ZZZ Bears are proudly sold at these Military Exchanges

Proud partners of TAPS