MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! You helped a US Army Chaplain and his troops!

YOU DID IT!  100% Fulfillment of the requests for socks.  I am really proud of you.

1800 pairs of sock in less than a month and a half.


Our own “Cantor”, frequent commentator here, broke down the purchases by location. NB: British Columbia and the Netherlands!

AK          1
**BC**                1
ID            2
ME         2
NV          2
UT          2
AL           4
DE           4
**NL**                5
AR          6
RI            6
NH          7
SD           8
LA           10
NE          10
WV         10
DC          14
KS           17
NM        17
MS         18
MA         20
IN           22
SC           22
KY           24
OK          26
WA         26
CO          32
TN          33
CT           35
FL            35
MN        38
GA          40
NJ           40
MO        56
IL             59
MT         59
NC          59
OR          60
MI          66
MD         74
PA          82
AZ           84
NY          98
VA          109
TX           110
WI          115
OH          142
CA          147

TOTAL   1859


One of the most important things that troops on the ground need are good stockings.

Socks. Soldiers. Think about it.

A priest of the Diocese of Madison, Fr. Jason Hesseling, is an Army Chaplain on active duty in Afghanistan – 1st BN 3rd SFG (A). There are 500 soldiers in that unit.  That’s the one to look for.

Fr. Hesseling, in conjunction with Fox River, created a site through which YOU, dear readers, can buy socks for the troops!

They need lots o’ socks, friends.  They need hundreds…. thousands.

Why Fox River socks?

Fr. H wrote to me:

I’m very grateful for any publicity you can offer to us, and any support you can throw our way. The guys love these socks, they usually buy them on their own if I can’t supply them since they are rugged, they are battle proven, and they don’t melt or cause further injury when exposed to fire/explosions. Any soldier will tell you that maintaining your feet is almost as important as maintaining your weapon downrange. These socks help in that effort.

Thanks again for all the prayers and support. Blessings in all things…

To view The Soliders’ Wishlist and to order socks go HERE.

There are quite a few units. To find Fr. Hesseling’s unit scroll down or, fast, do a CTR+F search for 300. [Otherwise, #100764]

Please pitch in?  It is a simple thing to do, but they will be grateful.

When people send me a donation or something from my wishlist, it is a dose of encouragement.  It really picks me up.   There is no question that you could do the same for them, in much harder circumstances than I have.


Fr. Z's usual travel gear with Fox River socks! Click for larger view.

If 1 in 10 readers here would help, think of what an impact we could make?

Also, I have in the past had Fox River socks on my wishlist.  KA sent me few pair a couple years ago.  They are GREAT in boots while walking. They really hold up.

Again, click HERE and CTL+F search #100764

And once they get all their socks, who says you can’t buy more for other units?

Finally: to buy Fox River socks for yourselves, click HERE.  They are great.

A shot of the order form which allows FREE SHIPPING.

PS: It might take a little while for your order to appear as registered on that site. Patience.


WOW!  Great response so far.  I counted 122 pairs so far!  6% fulfillment.

UPDATE 16 April 03:35 GMT:

Look at what you have done!


I am impressed and proud of you!

Look at this!  Look how the numbers have changed.

UPDATE: 17 April 1609 GMT:


UPDATE: 18 April:

We have moved about 500 pairs of socks so far. Keep it going!

UPDATE: 20 April:

35% OORAH!

UPDATE: 14 May:


I had a note from the priest/chaplain stationed at Bagram in Afghanistan (my emphases):

Fr. Z,

I’ve been absolutely amazed at the response of socks that my unit has received so far.  Far beyond my wildest expectations!  And the guys are very appreciative.  I’m giving them blank thank you cards to fill out and send your way and to those who have donated their precious funds to provide for them.  When I go out to a team site with a box of these socks in my hands, the guys are blown away.  Again, I can’t thank you enough for your support and the support of those who follow your blog.  I’ve included a couple of pictures of some of my infantry guys with socks in hand.  I hope you can see from their smiles how grateful they are.

Thanks again for all the support.

UPDATE 16 May:

55%!  Way to go!

Can you do more?  Tell your friends.

UPDATE 24 May:

56% right now.  Can you get this up to 75% by the end of Memorial Day?

UPDATE 25 May (morning):


UPDATE 26 May (morning):


UPDATE 27 May (evening):


Earlier we got to 97%.  I come back to check tonight and … I couldn’t find our project!  #10074 is GONE!

You can always support other units but.. you did it.


When I hear back from Fr. H, I will post.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Be The Maquis, Fr. Z KUDOS, I'm just askin'..., Mail from priests, Our Catholic Identity, The Campus Telephone Pole, What Fr. Z is up to and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Cincinnati Priest says:

    5 pair on their way from this reader

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  2. Magpie says:

    Surely the US government can and should be buying suitable socks for their soldiers, or have they wasted that money on diversity training and re-programming?

  3. OrthodoxChick says:

    Don’t forget to share this post from Fr. Z on Facebook, twitter, and all social media. Even if you do not have many followers, or don’t know how to use Father’s sharing buttons, you can share/tweet a link to this post on Fr. Z.’s blog with a simple copy & paste. [Thanks for mentioning the share buttons! What is it around here anyway? C’mon peeps! Use those buttons!] Direct your share/tweet to people with more followers and maybe they’ll help Fr. Z. get the word out. I directed my tweet to Gov. Mike Huckabee, pastor Rick Warren, and the guys from Duck Dynasty.

  4. chantgirl says:

    Magpie, you’d think that it would be a no-brainer, but the last time my Marine brother was in Afghanistan the most requested items were socks, food, and scapulars.

  5. TWF says:

    If this is truly a need, as it appears to be, I think it is a worthy cause. That being said, I, like Magpie find it amazing that proper socks aren’t provided by the DoD…considering that the DoD’s annual budget is much larger than the entire combined budget of my federal government (Canadian) and accounts for half of all military spending worldwide…out of hundreds of billions of dollars they cheap out on socks? Unbelievable. [So… how many did you order?]

  6. NancyP says:

    I can’t speak for the Army or Air Force, but, as a Navy wife, I can tell you how the Navy/Marine Corps does things. Sailors and Marines get an annual uniform allowance (officers don’t) and they use that allowance to buy the things they need, including socks. The Navy sells great socks in their Exchanges, but when you’re forward deployed, you can’t get there to buy them. Hence all the requests for socks. And rosaries. (My Baptist chaplain friend used to carry them in Iraq – he handed them out to Catholic Marines and prayed the Rosary with them.)

    So, yes, the government gives our fighting forces the money to buy their uniforms and socks, but socks wear out (especially when you’re working out every day – that’s why the white training socks are on the list). And when they wear out, you need new ones, even if your uniform allowance has been spent for the year.

    Trust me, if the government handed out $17 socks to our Armed Forces members, civilians would be screaming that it’s all a government boondoggle and we’d be reading articles about taxpayer-funded, gold-threaded miracle wonder socks and how our fighting forces don’t need them anyway.

    Bottom line: I ordered some socks.

  7. Priam1184 says:

    2 pair on their way, and I think I might buy some for myself too since nothing beats a good pair of socks.

  8. anniemw says:

    To add to what NancyP has said. I am the wife of a not-too-long retired Army officer [26 years’ service] and the mom of a young man who’s in the Special Forces Qualification Course and is enlisted. When he finished one portion of his training, his uniforms were completely ruined and so he had to buy new ones. Relative to his monthly earnings, this was a shockingly large expense.
    Years ago I believe there would have been a one-for-one trade [one would turn in the ruined uniforms for replacement, no charge], but this is no longer the case. There is a uniform allowance, but it isn’t always adequate.

    For a junior enlisted man with a wife and/or children, helping him by buying socks can make a huge difference. Showing that we care is priceless.

    Thank you, Father, for bringing this to our attention. Thank you, Father Hesseling, for your paternal care for your flock. Who knows, some day you might be my son’s chaplain!!

    In Christ, annie

  9. Mike says:

    Whatever you think of war and how wars are run, troops have always been underprovisioned. Deal with it. Bellyaching is not a corporal work of mercy.

    Ten pairs on order from this corner.

  10. BridgetTheresa says:

    Father Z, Thank you for another fine suggestion for all of us to pitch in to aid the work of good and holy priests. We are grateful to participate; the site was easy to navigate and it only took a few minutes to complete the order.

  11. MaryW says:

    Two pair on their way with a shout out to you, Father. Another opportunity for giving during this Lenten season before it ends.

  12. pannw says:

    I wish there was some sort of priority on the type of socks most urgently needed. Wick Dry fire retardent, or fatigue fighter, trainer….??? Too many choices!!! I wish I could buy them all. I guess I’ll pick a straw.

  13. FrNathan says:

    What a great idea for Holy Thursday! 4 pair on the way.

  14. Elizium23 says:

    I once knew a Fr. Nathan at a Newman Center. He was nice.

  15. SuzyQ says:

    What a great opportunity for almsgiving in the last few days of Lent.!! Thanks for the suggestion. Two pairs on their way. I’ve worn Fox River socks for years and I hope our soldiers enjoy theirs as much as I’ve enjoyed mine!

  16. DebbieInCT says:

    Done! Great idea, thanks for the opportunity Fr. Z.

  17. Grateful to be Catholic says:

    Great idea, thank you! Socks on the way to troops and one pair on order for hubby, who is very fussy. I hope he likes them and solves that problem!

  18. lgreen515 says:

    2 pair sent.

  19. Charles E Flynn says:

    Good to see some fellow fire safety aficionados ordering the flame retardant models. George Washington is proud of you, and would have liked to have had such a Website when he was at Valley Forge.

  20. MouseTemplar says:

    We sent one of each. So much better than chocolate bunnies for Easter!

    Hey, maybe Mystic Monk Coffees could do this…I hear the military coffee is lousy.

  21. HobokenZephyr says:

    10 on the way in honor of military chaplains who have been very important to me throughout my life.

  22. HobokenZephyr says:

    @Mike: Bellyaching may not be a corporal work of mercy, but it is a Lance Corporal’s God given right!

  23. chen2 says:

    8 pairs sent!

  24. TopSully says:

    @HobokenZephyr – it is not only your right, but your duty as a Lance Corporal!

  25. TopSully says:

    PS – I’ll be sending in an order tomorrow.

  26. TKS says:

    Ten pair sent from an old vet. Glad to help.

  27. The Masked Chicken says:

    Come on, guys, send that foot wear. As Rowan and Martin on Laugh-in used to say:


    The Chicken

  28. TWF says:

    Father – to answer your question on my earlier post, I did place an order, but as a Canadian this has prompted me to look into options for supporting Canadian troops…who I must sadly say are very much often underappreciated by their countrymen – and certainly underfunded in recent decades. We could definitely learn something from Americans on this front. [You should organize something. Reach out to the Military Archdiocese.]

  29. tramtrist says:

    2 pair on the way

  30. MouseTemplar says:

    If everybody sent just one pair, I’m sure Fr. Z’s readers could top this off.

    ROCK those SOCKS!

  31. my kidz mom says:

    Thank you for this opportunity, Fr. Z. Sent 8 pairs in honor of the 80th anniversary of the ordination of my uncle, WWII Naval Chaplain assigned to the 4th Marine Division. He was wounded on Tinian and received the Presidential Unit Citation and Purple Heart.


  32. JonPatrick says:

    In the time it took for my Mystic Monk to brew, placed an order! Very quick. Site looks interesting, may have to order some for myself.

  33. Pullapis says:

    4 Pairs on the way from this reader, 2 from my girlfriend, and a few more contacts trying to work something up. Support our troops!

  34. Phil_NL says:

    2 pairs on the way.

    The US armed forces are what has kept civilization safe for decades. Even though I can’t say they are ‘our troops’, I’m glad to be able to support them!

  35. chantgirl says:

    3 pair of the flame retardant kind sent with a shout out from Fr. Z’s website.

  36. TopSully says:

    Almost 350 pair since yesterday. Outstanding!

  37. Betsy says:

    Two pair from me. And lots of prayers. Remember Capt Anthony Caucci who’s also now on a FOB in Afghanistan… He’s my nephew. Thanks.

  38. Skeinster says:

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Fr. Z.
    I smiled at the “flame retardant”. One of the requirements for helmet liners knit for the troops is that they must be 100% wool. This is stressed like !!eleventy!!
    B/c non-melting.
    Superwash is okay, though.

  39. 28% fulfillment so far!

    Sock by sock.

    Keep it going!

  40. Kyle says:

    5 pair sent! Thank you for the opportunity to help this priest and his soldiers.

    BTW, Father Z: which pair is shown in your picture? They look quite nice.

  41. UPDATE: 18 April:

    We have moved about 500 pairs of socks so far. Keep it going!

  42. Jayna says:

    One fire retardant pair from me. Wish I could send more, but underemployment is really testing my ability to pay my bills.

  43. UPDATE!


    Could you do more?

  44. HyacinthClare says:

    Just sent 8 pairs… this is fun!

  45. Carolina Geo says:

    Thanks, Fr. Z, for reposting this. Somehow I had missed it the first couple of times around. I am happy to add my name to the sock contributors list!

  46. Chon says:

    Mike, people aren’t bellyaching. They are asking a reasonable question. I thank the people who explained the situation. I wondered, but was afraid to ask. As a former Forest Service employee, I can greatly appreciate having socks that don’t burn or melt.

  47. mamajen says:

    Thanks for the update. I was enjoying watching that percentage climb and climb, but lost track of the page after a while. So happy to see the soldiers enjoying their new socks.

  48. Mike says:

    More on the way.

  49. A.D. says:

    Three pair on their way. I’ll send more when I can. God bless!

  50. MouseTemplar says:

    Thanks for posting the pictures of Men in Socks!

    Payday coming so more socks going out from Grand Rapids!

  51. Luvadoxi says:

    I must be dimmer than your other readers, but I couldn’t figure out your instructions about all the control C control V, etc. I did seem to find the unit by copying the number, getting to the site, and then hitting control F, but I couldn’t figure out from the list if I was on the right one or where the socks are exactly. Would love to contribute but I want to make sure I’m doing it right.

  52. green fiddler says:

    Remembering Fr. Hesseling’s battalion in prayers as well.
    God bless all of our dear Troops and Veterans.

  53. Phil_NL says:

    Shipped another 3 pairs.

    Father Z., just bump this regularly for maximum effect. I noticed last time it had dropped off the main page very fast, and off the side-bar soon after, and to be honest, navigation around older posts is a bit labor-intensive on your site. More visibility = more socks!

  54. Phil_NL says:

    We’re past the 50% mark now, btw.

  55. StJude says:

    I am so broke I could only send 2 pair. I hope it helps a little.

    51% now.

  56. irishnana says:

    4 pair on the way!

  57. Supertradmum says:

    I shall pray that these socks multiply as I am paying for socks for a certain sem in England. Prayers for more socks….on the way.

  58. Luvadoxi says:

    Socks sent! I must have been tired the other night–no problem figuring it out. :)

  59. 55% fulfillment!



  60. MouseTemplar says:

    Memorial Day 30% off sale at Fox River for Military Socks!!!

  61. MouseTemplar says:

    5 more pair sent.
    The sale goes through May 27. [Saved $25 on my order.]

  62. cantrix says:

    4 pairs sent.

    And the site is giving 30% off orders for Memorial Day!

  63. Imrahil says:

    If you suffer me to chime in with what at home we call 08/15 stuff…

    wasn’t equipment the responsibilitu of the Employer*?

    And wasn’t it a disciplinary offense to wear any clothes other than those equipped with in service or perhaps identical ones (“univilian clothing”)? Even perhaps implying a breach of the foremost duty, loyal serving, to suggest the Employer would equip insufficiently, and of the duty of comradeship to get oneself an advantage the comrades have not?

    [Not suggesting soldiering is employment. I only find no better rendering, at the moment, for the rather personified use of “der Dienstherr” I was thinking of.]

    That said, good luck to find socks and a triple Horridoh! to the U.S. troops, plus the wish of a quiet service as the phrase goes.

  64. Luvadoxi says:

    Sent more socks to the troops, bought some for me and my husband, and sent you a gift card, Father! This feels good. :)

  65. karmato says:

    I’m in for 5 pair!

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

  66. Quanah says:

    Done. I also passed this on to a lot of individuals on Facebook and posted it on another Catholic Facebook page. Especially with that unexpected discount we can get this to 100% fulfillment by the end of Memorial Day weekend.

  67. happyCatholic says:

    I meant to do this during Lent. Thanks for posting this on Memorial Day weekend! I love having something concrete to do to show appreciation for our troops! And as a bonus — what girl could pass up a sale? ;-)

  68. happyCatholic says:

    Posted it to Facebook! Also, with the whole VA scandal coming to light, here is something positive to do.

  69. MaryW says:

    Thanks for the periodic reminders, Father. Was thinking I could send only 1 pair this time around, but with the 30% discount I was able to send 2 pair! God bless you, Father!

  70. DebbieInCT says:

    Done – 3 pairs from me! That discount was very nice :)

  71. Cantor says:

    The discount is helpful! I have to commend the company for their contribution to what our troops need, Fr. Hesseling for passing it thru channels, and Fr. Z for getting out the word. That’s what we used to call “the chain of commend”. Honored to be able to do my share.

  72. MouseTemplar says:

    4 more pair sent; decided I could skip the Starbucks drive through next week. [Right. A good point. Small sacrifices elsewhere enable us to do other things.]

  73. JackG says:

    Socked it to ’em, Baby! 8 pair.

  74. JackG says: 8 pair

    Well done!

  75. george says:

    5 pair ordered

    “Thank you!” to the troops, Fr. Hesseling, and Fr. Z!

  76. teejay329 says:

    Sock’d it to ’em as well! The discount almost pays for another pair of socks to be sent to the troops. What a great way to show your American spirit. As always, thanks to Fr. Z for making us aware. And…my apologies for sending a link from Rorate Caeli…I wasn’t aware of the rift.

  77. Erlenmeyer says:

    2 pairs ordered.

    Thanks for posting this, Father.

  78. HyacinthClare says:

    I think I sent my last batch to somebody else… I should read more closely! This set of 10 went to the right place (probably they are all the right place…)

  79. Cantor says:

    By the way, you can learn something more about the soldiers (and feet!) we’re supporting at:

    3rd Special Forces Group

  80. Fiat Domine says:

    On behalf of our warriors, God bless you dear Father Z .

    16 pairs of requested sox for those warrior feet that are walking a strange land so far away from their home, our home; God be at their sides, before them, behind them, below them, above them, along with Saint Michael and his troops.

  81. Cathy says:

    WooHoo! 10 pair sent, I saved $33.00! I can’t pass up a great sale!

  82. Gregg the Obscure says:

    Thanks for organizing this. I sent some today taking advantage of the discount.

  83. Obumbrabit says:

    I sent two pairs today on account of the discount!

  84. cathgrl says:

    89 percent fulfilled! Less then 200 pairs left! Get them before they’re gone!!

  85. MouseTemplar says:

    My email from the site stated the sale goes through Tuesday…

  86. mamajen says:

    Grabski, [Whose tasteless post I REMOVED!]

    I decided the best response to your pathetic comment was to send even more socks.

  87. 95% FULFILLED

    Fantastic. I am so proud of the readership.

    Can we get 5% more? Let’s knock this out of the park.

  88. I went on late last night, not wanting to miss 30% discount. But I sent them to a different unit! Oh well, they all need them.

    But, not to let down our genial host, I went back today and sent more — to the right recipient this time!

    Thanks for doing this, Father; I hope all four of my regular readers make their way over here!

  89. Cathy says:

    Fr. Fox, I hope you still put Father Z sent me.

  90. Cathy says:

    Wow, only 50 pair left!

  91. Cathy:

    No, darn it, I didn’t do that either! (I did say I was praying for them.)

    When I was in grade school, the report card often said, “doesn’t pay attention to directions.”

  92. The Sicilian Woman says:

    Father Fox, as long as your earlier contribution is given to those who need them, then it’s gone to the right place. I’m not much for directions, either. ;-)

    98% fulfilled now! Plus, other wish lists have been fulfilled since I ordered yesterday, and others with low percentages of fulfillment have increased in fulfillment percentages. So good to see.

  93. cathgrl says:

    I think we did it! 100764 is looonnngg gone!

  94. mamajen says:

    Just checked, and the wishlist is gone. 100% fulfilled! Fr. Z’s readers have donated tens of thousands of dollars worth of socks! What an amazing display of generosity.

  95. mamajen says:

    Here’s a link to the contributor page where it officially states 100%: http://www.foxsox.com/catalog/soldierwishlistcontributors.aspx?listid=100764

  96. The Sicilian Woman says:

    Yeah! It was for a good cause, and fun, especially for those of us with OCD who kept checking the percentages. (We know who we are! Ha ha.)

    Fr. Hesseling mentioned, I think in the original post in April, that the service members also request scapulars. I’d be happy to contribute towards the purchase of scapulars if he made an arrangement with a Catholic supply store, unless he takes care of the scapular requests himself.

  97. Earlier we got to 97%.  I come back to check tonight and … I couldn’t find our project!  #10074 is GONE!

    You can always support other units but.. you did it.


    When I hear back from Fr. H, I will post.

  98. Cantor says:

    Now, now, Badger – Don’t forget the contributions from British Columbia (Canada!) and Rotterdam (Netherlands!)

  99. Militans says:

    Over $25,000 in a month and a half? Over $500 a day? Wow!

  100. Elizabeth D says:

    Maybe you could raise money for a Habitat for Humanity house (did you see the news story about Pope Francis House that was built thanks to a Catholic donor?) or fund a Catholic school in Haiti or something (talk to Deacon Jack Fernan of Madison Diocese about how bad it is there, he went during Lent and was shocked). Or keep buying socks, for the homeless. At my homeless volunteer job at St Vincent de Paul we give away lots of socks, it is a sock bottomless pit, and it is regular inexpensive socks. It is a comforting thing to have new socks.

  101. Andy Lucy says:


Comments are closed.