300 Pittsburgh-area military children receive backpacks and school supplies from Operation Homefront

CORAOPOLIS, Pa. — Around 300 children from military families received free school supplies and backpacks as a gesture of thanks today.

Operation Homefront, a national nonprofit organization, partners with local businesses ever year to host its “Back-to-School Brigade.”

This year, tablets, crayons and books were given to the children.

“It means a lot, it’s so helpful because I have seven kids so it helps save a lot on school supplies,” said participant Latrice Taylor.

The giveaway was held in Coraopolis.

“It takes the whole community and it’s such a blessing and it really does my heart good and then you can say to the military ... oh no ... the community is behind you they are out there supporting you. You don’t always see them, but they’re there in the background,” said Deb Krall, the Pittsburgh team captain of Operation Homefront.

Krall has been spearheading Operation Homefront in Pittsburgh for over a decade. She was a member of the military, who was also a single parent at one point.

“I was there, I know what it takes. I know you need help sometimes,” said Krall.

The efforts of Krall and others were particularly appreciated, particularly during a year of inflation and rising prices.

“It’s awesome that there’s something out there that we can get the supplies we need for our children,” said Sgt. Matthew Komaniak. “Everything is getting expensive these days so we are extremely grateful for this. No words can really describe it.”

This year, the organization gave away its 500,000th backpack since 2008. The organization said it has saved military families more than $55 million.

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