Businesses donate 100 Daddy Dolls to families of deployed troops

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WITN) -The most wonderful time of the year for most families, can be one of the toughest for military families with spouses on deployment.

In an effort to bring comfort to service families, Hug A Hero and, USUV Clean, a clean energy UVC lighting company, partnered to help bring those service members a little closer to home in the form of “Daddy-Doll” pillows.

The energy company donated 400 customizable dolls with a picture of each service member on deployment. Hug a Hero is donating 100 of the dolls to families of active service members.

Hug-A-Hero business owner Elissa-Faith Dyal explained there’s a bit of a personal connection within the heartwarming gesture.

“So Hug-A-Hero um has been a big part of my life with my dad being in the military. When I was a kid he was gone majority of my childhood so I was able to have the doll and connect with him while he was away,” Dyal.

“We just jumped on board because it’s like wow this is something that can impact a lot of people and seeing the impact on the families that we’ve given them to already today. I didn’t think I’d get emotional but it was definitely an emotional experience I didn’t expect it,” said USUV Clean CEO David Greenough.

The gesture brings two of those 100 Daddy-Dolls to expecting-mother, Khelani Irwin, and her son Cameron. The three are awaiting Irwin’s husband on his early return from deployment.

“He’s missed everything so it’s, it’s hard but knowing he’s actually gonna be home sorry I’m so sorry it’s just really exciting I get to have my best friends I get to have my supporter and we get to bring our next son in the world together and I didn’t think you’d make it it’s just it’s a Christmas miracle is what it is,” said Irwin.

USUV Clean and Hug-A-Hero say in addition to active service families, the dolls also get distributed to students in surrounding schools in both North and South Carolina.