Villages resident sews quilt for Wounded Warriors Battalions

THE VILLAGES — For a week, Patty Kinsey worked on the words, spelling them out in thread in rows of tiny X’s: “You have the title ‘Marine’ upon graduation from recruit training. It wasn’t willed to you; it isn’t a gift. It is not a government subsidy. Few can claim the title; no one can take it away. It is yours forever.”

When she finished, the quote from Don Bartlett in Leatherneck Magazine became the final addition to a quilt destined to go to a wounded U.S. Marine at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

Kinsey made the quilt at the request of her Village of Glenbrook neighbor, Brian Bates, a military retiree who works tirelessly drumming up support for the Marine Corps’ Wounded Warriors Battalions. Located at Camp Lejeune on the east coast and in Camp Pendleton, Calif., on the west coast, the battalions were created to provide support for combat-wounded Marines.

“It’s a place to recuperate together,” Bates said.

Bates has campaigned to get fellow Villagers to write to the wounded Marines, extending their gratitude for their service to the country and wishing them and their families well.

Knowing that Kinsey sews, he asked if she would make a quilt to send to Camp Lejeune.

Kinsey agreed, as a favor to Bates, although she does not consider herself a gifted quilter.

At one time, she said, she started going to a Villages quilting guild, but she dropped out after comparing her work to that of the other quilters.

“They are just so great. I was intimidated,” Kinsey said.

Using a flag with the Marine emblem, given to her by Bates, as the focal point of the quilt, she surrounded it with blocks in American flag colors of red, white, blue and gold and black from the Marine emblem.

The design is simple, but effective.

“I just did it out of my heart,” Kinsey said.

Bates also gave her a tile with the quote from Leatherneck Magazine, and Kinsey translated the words into counted crosstitch and appliqu/d the finished work onto the underside of the quilt, where it is framed by the blue backing.

The quilt will be mailed to U.S. Marine Maj. James Capers who, along with other officers in the command, will decide which wounded Marine will receive it.

“It’ll warm somebody,” said Kinsey’s husband Bob. “I thought it was great, a wonderful thing for Patty to do. I hope other people will read about it and be inspired to do something likewise.”

Bates also hopes that Kinsey’s quilt won’t be the only quilt sent from The Villages to the Wounded Warrior Battalion. He is willing to provide the flags with Marine emblems to anyone who wants to use them in making a quilt.

Kinsey said she hopes the quilt she made will become a treasured possession of the recipient because it was made from her heart.

“I just hope somebody will get it and feel loved,” Kinsey said. “I respect everything they’ve done for our country.”

Glenda Sanders is a features writer for the Daily Sun. She can be reached at 753-1119, ext. 9245, or at