As the pandemic hit the US in early March and the schools began to close, Cheryl Chamberlain, our dear friend, mentor, and business teacher at Grand Island High School, faced an excess inventory problem at Casey’s Corner, the school store that she runs with the help of all her business students. With the imminent school closing, there would be a lot of food items that would spoil if they remain unsold. She asked her students whether or not they should donate it. They all agreed. During the same time, one of her former students, James, was quarantined on the USS Theodore Roosevelt. Many of us know what transpired on that ship. [The sailors had to eventually leave the ship and spend 33 days quarantined in Guam.] Mrs. Chamberlain made it her mission to supply the leftover snacks from Casey’s Corner to James and his fellow sailors on the ship. She came to us and we assisted her with her mission, with great pleasure and honor. Amanda, James’ sister, also came by a few weeks after Mrs. Chamberlain to ship another care package to her brother, which he also eventually received.

Although the shipments took many weeks to arrive, James finally did receive all the boxes when he got back on the ship after quarantine and wrote about his sentiments on Facebook. These projects make us truly overjoyed and rejuvenated, giving us true purpose for what we do everyday and why we do it.

Here are Mrs Chamberlain’s words on Facebook:

During [an] online class I asked my students what to do with our snack food inventory and they all wanted to donate it. So after seeing former GIHS student James W on social media talk about the USS Theodore Roosevelt being quarantined due to the Corona virus, I made it my mission today to get well wishes from my students and donations began coming in thanks to Greg Chamberlain. So on behalf of the crew of this fine ship I want to thank my students, Casey’s Corner School Store, Cappellino Cadillac, the Casey Family (Jude Casey Kuehne), Tim and Amy Hirschman, Dan Sowers, Ronald Zysk, and Island Ship Center for their contribution toward supplies for these noble sailors. #VikingStrong

After receiving the care packages, James wrote this public thank you note to Mrs Chamberlain on Facebook:

So after 33 days I am finally Covid free and back on the ship. I just wanted to give you a heads up that we got the boxes and I can’t tell you how incredibly grateful we are. There’s only three of us back at on the ship at the moment. The rest will be trickling back in hopefully within the week. But I have to say you guys went above and beyond. lol! These care packages were incredible. This is really going to put a smile on the faces of the rest of my shipmates when they return. I love you guys and miss you all. Please tell everyone involved how grateful we all are at the thought that was put into this. You guys really made this [trying] time that much better. I hope you guys are staying safe and doing well.

After receiving Amanda’s package, Amanda sent us this note to share with all of you:

I have been a customer of Island Ship Center for many years. As a college student shipping text books to a mother shipping out baby items to other mothers. I recently sent out a box of goodies to my brother who was quarantined on the USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT, which he received on 5/12/2020. My baby brother FINALLY tested negative, and was able to board the ship to recieve his package. I want to personally thank Fahim for sending it out asap, and having the same sense of urgency that I, his sister, had. Thank you so so much from the bottom of my heart!!!

Thank you all for allowing us to be of service to our community, our country and our world.

With gratitude, resilience, and a collaborative spirit,

Fahim & Seema Mojawalla, Co-Owners

Island Ship Center #SpaOfShipping #FahimFix #SeemaSolves

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