Singer Kellie Pickler spent Christmas with U.S. troops in Afghanistan to bring “home to our service men and women,” she said.
The “American Idol” contestant-turned-country star spent a few days delivering holiday cheer at the Kandahar Airfield base, posing for photographs with service members, visiting wounded soldiers and performing for the troops, the Washington Post reported.
“If I were an Afghan woman, I would hope someone would help me provide a better life for me and my children,” she said of the war effort, according to the Post.
The 27-year-old visited the Middle East during a nine-day tour for the USO’s “Every Moment Counts” campaign, which launched on Veterans Day 2013, to help troops and their families create everyday moments they missed. She also performed five shows for the servicemen and women abroad.
“The USO tours and programs I’ve been a part of have definitely been the highlight of my career, so I’m honored to join the USO in helping to raise awareness about the many precious moments that our troops and their families sacrifice due to their commitment and service to our country,” Pickler said in a statement, E! News reported.
“Every Moment Counts is especially close to my heart because it not only recognizes their personal sacrifices, but gives Americans the opportunity to thank our troops with a special gift of a moment.”
“The Woman I Am” singer also shared a few extraordinary moments on Twitter.
In one she shared a candid shot of herself sitting with a soldier on the back of a helicopter.
Not every Christmas do you get 2 fist bump a soldier while hanging your feet off the back of a Chinook in Afghanistan pic.twitter.com/nBwNPMnOf7— kellie pickler (@kelliepickler) December 26, 2013
“Kyle and I flying high in the cockpit of a C-17!! #USOtour :) ,” she tweeted, sharing a selfie, above.
This was the seventh USO tour for Pickler, the Post said, and she also serenaded the troops with a few Christmas songs.
Onstage, the crooner joked that she “really wanted to bring y’all some Jack Daniels,” asked the cowboys to raise their hands and joked that her husband called her “his gypsy redneck.”
“There’s no place I’d rather spend Christmas,” she told them.
[For the record, 5:05 p.m. Thursday: In an earlier version of this post, the headline misspelled Kellie Pickler’s last name as Picker.]
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