Get out your tissues everyone. I was personally touched by this because when my husband went to boot camp our son was only 10 months old and my husband was so afraid his son would forget him. We purchased a recordable story book and every night his father would read to him. We also placed pictures of Daddy around the house and played “Where is Daddy?” My husband missed our son’s first steps and his first birthday while in boot camp however when he returned our son still remembered him. Even though his Daddy was gone he was apart of his everyday life! As a military wife it is so important to find little ways to keep your spouse and children connected. This teddy bear would have been amazing at that time in our lives and may be necessary depending on our future.
Gary Beauregard started bearegards.com. It’s a small business that was started by an Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) veteran named Garry Beauregard. The business creates teddy bears that house small recording devices so individuals can record their voice messages and send them to family, friends, loved ones etc. Could you imagine getting a box in the mail from Daddy with a new friend that said “I love you!” As a child this gift would be so comforting.
It’s not necessarily our product that is revolutionary but the inspiration behind it. During Garry’s time with the AFSOC he was sent on many long deployments leaving his wife and three children behind. He has shared the painful story of how his oldest son routinely lapsed into depression and his daughter even forgot who he was and would cry as if he was a stranger upon his return. He prides his wife on helping to keep their family together even though those were some of the hardest most physically and emotionally draining times his family went through. He says that he and his wife discovered that the one thing that would help soothe their children while he was deployed were tape recordings of his voice. After that revelation, it was only a small leap to putting those recordings into something his kids could cuddle and hold onto and that’s when the Bearegards recordable teddy bear was born.
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While Garry’s story is one about keeping his family intact during deployment and veteran entrepreneurship, his story has also just evolved into one of philanthropy. Garry has been trying to find a way to reach out and support other military families facing deployment and finding a way to help their families cope. So they have started the Sending Love Initiative! It’s goal is to send our recordable bears to families with a deployed parent. Garry knows that if leaving recordings with “I love you” and “Sleep tight” worked to help his kids make it through his deployments then it could help other military children too.
There are 1.2 million children of active duty military members who could use a little love sent their way. For only $12.95 to donate a bear. They make no money from the donations it simply covers the cost of production and operation. What a wonderful gift for a little boy or girl! To Donate or purchase go to bearegards.com Please share this with your family and friends who might know someone who needs this in their lives. Something so small can make such a big difference in how a child goes to sleep tonight.