Little Soldier Girl's Family Overwhelmed, Humbled - NBC 10 Philadelphia

Little Soldier Girl's Family Overwhelmed, Humbled

One photo changed the Bennethum family's world forever



    Little Soldier Girl's Family Overwhelmed, Humbled
    The Bennethums say the response to their photo has been surprising and wonderful.

    "It's been nuts," is how Abby Bennethum describes the immense response to a photo she took this July.

    The heart-wrenching picture of her husband, Staff Sgt. Brett Bennethum, holding their four-year old daughter's hand before heading off to war in Iraq, apparently struck a chord with Americans.

    Strangers who have been touched by the image's symbolism -- a soldier standing at attention while his daughter wipes her eye -- flooded the Berks County family with well wishes, prayers and support.

    From offers to fix the family's sub-par computer so that the kids can video chat with their dad, to offers of making care packages for Staff Sgt. Bennethum's unit, to just simple prayers, the family is overwhelmed by offers from strangers.

    Little Soldier Girl's Family Overwhelmed by Support

    [PHI] Little Soldier Girl's Family Overwhelmed by Support
    Paige's picture stirred a nation and now overwhelming support is pouring in to the Bennethum family.
    (Published Monday, Oct. 12, 2009)

    "I want to read everything that's been sent to me," Abby said of the hundreds of Facebook messages, emails, phone calls and visits. "It's gonna take some time."

    The local VFW has reached out and offered to collect and ship any care packages to Staff Sgt. Bennethum's unit. Those interested can send packages to Sinking Spring VFW 6150, 550 Columbia Avenue, Sinking Spring, Pa. 19608 or call 610.670.1011.

    "Thank you and I'm amazed by the support and response ... all the troops can use the support," Abby said.

    As for Paige, the child in the original photo, she feels "happy" about the response. Although she adds that she still misses her daddy.