Elizabeth Laird Is Every Soldier’s Grandma

Elizabeth Laird Is Every Soldier’s Grandma

Elizabeth Laird, a.k.a. the Fort Hood Hug Lady, has been embracing our soldiers for 10 years now, and at 81-years-old, she’s still at it.

“I hug all the soldiers before they deploy. I hug them when they redeploy. I hug the soldiers if I see them uptown. I hug them if I’m traveling and there’s any military, they all get hugs,” she states.

“Two a.m., 10 p.m., whenever,” Laird says. “They know they can count on me.”

She also is there when they return home.

“I wish America could see what I see. The look in their eyes. They love this country. They are willing to do anything for this country. They’re willing to die for this country. Anything I can do to get a smile out of them, to let them know that we care.”

God bless this woman and those like her.

You can follow Elizabeth on her Facebook page here:

https://www.facebook.com/FortHoodHugLady

At 81, Elizabeth Laird, the Fort Hood Hug Lady, has bade goodbye to and welcomed home uncountable numbers of service members on outbound and incoming flights. And going on 10 years, she’s still at it.

“I’m there right now,” Laird said by phone last week. “I just put some soldiers on a plane.”

The American-Statesman first brought you the diminutive woman’s story in 2010. Things started when a soldier hugged her while she was working as a Salvation Army volunteer at the base. She hugged another, and another, and soon enough, the installation’s then-command sergeant major said he wanted her to hug “every soldier coming and going.”

That she has been doing, with no more than 10 flights missed — some of which were during a hospital stay, and she sent a proxy then — since June 2003, months after the American invasion of Iraq.

“Two a.m., 10 p.m., whenever,” Laird said. “They know they can count on me.”

She hugs the soldiers guarding the security gate at Fort Hood’s entrance. She hugs service members when she travels. She has dispensed tens, perhaps hundreds, of thousands.

“You know what my purpose is,” said the Air Force veteran and one-time wife of a Marine. “My purpose is to tell them the Lord will protect them if they ask him. I give them the 91st Psalm, the soldier’s psalm, and if there’s no chaplain, I’ll pray for them.”

Laird lives in nearby Copperas Cove and still has her income tax business, Have Pencil Will Travel. She was hard at work last week on completing her clients’ taxes by the deadline.

Had she finished hers?

“No,” she said. “I’ll get an extension.”

Source: statesman.com


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