Randi Cairns is a military wife. Not the kind who lives on a military base amid other wives and families who share the common thread of a spouse who has been called to duty in Iraq or Afghanistan or some other far-off post. No–Randi and her husband and four children live in a suburban New Jersey neighborhood surrounded by other families where Mom or Dad, or both, usually go off to a job each day and return home for dinner.
Randi’s husband is a "weekend warrior", a member of the National Guard who, until 9/11, went off to serve for a weekend a month, and a few weeks in the summer. Along with so many other things that changed in this country after that terrible day, National Guardsmen found themselves called off to active duty far from home and Randi’s husband was one of them. Randi was left on her own to raise the kids, (you really have to read her description of the day she-8 months pregnant, on crutches because of a broken leg– took the three kids to the supermarket!) be both Mom and Dad, deal with daily crises and worry about her husband’s well-being and safety while he completed a tour of duty in Afghanistan. As Randi so aptly told us, "The communities where the typical Citizen-Soldier lives don’t understand the 24/7 implications of being the ones left behind when a Soldier is called to serve."
Home Front Hearts was Randi’s response to what she knows are the areas where military families could use support from their local communities. In the midst of raising her family, working a part-time job and doing what every other mother of four does, Randi started this organization not only to raise awareness of the needs for these families, but also to become a clearing-house for services for the Citizen-Soldier family. From our first discussions with her, we could not help but be impressed by her passion and her commitment to this mission. By providing Home Front Hearts with a new printer and some other simple office equipment we hope to have sent this fledgling program on its way to assisting military families in important and meaningful ways. Check out the web site to learn more about what she has done. http://homefronthearts.org