By Diane Toomey

Ravon WilsonCommunicating in our world of smart phones and social media has our friends and loved ones at our fingertips almost all the time.  We forget the ease at which most of us we can find loved ones in times of an emergency.

For our military families with loved ones who are serving, communicating urgent information can be more challenging and require assistance.

The Red Cross provides 24/7 global emergency communication services and support in military and veteran health care facilities across the country and around the world. In fact, from June 2016-July 2017, the American Red Cross provided more than 304,000 emergency communication services to over 79,000 service members and their families.

Ravon Wilson was a 19-year-old army recruit stationed in Fort Lewis, WA when she was contacted by a Red Cross Service to Armed Forces (SAF) team member. Ravon’s mother in Baltimore contacted the Red Cross to assist with communication to Ravon after her uncle’s unexpected death.

SAF also provided financial assistance in the form of an interest free loan so that Ravon could travel home.  They helped with booking the travel and getting her on the plane staying by her side providing direction and comfort.

The experience of working with Red Cross volunteers inspired Ravon to do some volunteer work of her own. She found her volunteer home within the Washington State foster care system.


If you have a member of the Armed Forces in your family, or are one yourself, we hope you know the American Red Cross is here whenever the need arises.  Please use the following phone number and web link and give us the opportunity to serve you.

To speak to a Red Cross Emergency Communications Specialist

call: 1-877-272-7337 or visit


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