US Navy Stories: Congratulations to the SEAL team that rescued our merchant seaman. Forceful action beats pleading any day.

For NSW, San Diego: Glad we could help. Thanks for the letter and challenge coin.

Have a video or youtube comment on the pads?  Let us know: ophelm@operation-helmet.org

January, 2010: Here we go again. How that all services have scrapped the PASGT helmet in favor of the Army-style ACH helmets, we're getting complaints about the discomfort and poor fit of helmets that utilize the 'new' GI helmet pads. While all 'approved' helmet pads protect from impact equally, the military only purchases the hard-as-a-rock but cheaper Team Wendy and MSA pads, choosing to forget lessons learned with the use of the more pliable and equally protective Oregon Aero pads used for the first 500,000-700,000 ACH helmets used by Army and our Special Ops troops. 

Cheaper is not always better when troops take their helmets off to relieve pressure points and are suddenly confronted with IED's, RPG's, and other forms of deadly ambush. Aside from the personal tragedy of combat injuries and deaths, the financial cost is staggering, passing $2,500,000 for the lifetime care of a brain-damaged warrior. Cheaper? I don't think so.

Seabees are back in the fray, now in Afghanistan, and asking for our help in replacing the painful pads they are issued with those that have stood the test of time.

We'd appreciate help in keeping our shipmates performing their dangerous and sometimes deadly missions with more comfort as well as better protection.

Make a Donation     All donations are used for the helmet pads, as we're a 100% volunteer organization with no salaries or admin fees.


1 Jul 2014: Kits: 6. Hometown: Staten Island NY. Heard about us: google. Duties: convoy. Current Pads: black sewn seam. Comments: n/a. PO2, USCG

21 Mar 2014: Kits: 1. Hometown: texas. Heard About us: friend. Duties: EOD tech in support of [deleted] Current Pads: MSA. Comments: friend has your pads and loves them. would love a pair too!!!!  EOD2; USN.

27 Feb 2014: Kits: 1. Hometown: CA. Heard About us: internet seach. Duties: Medic. Current Pads: NSN8470-01-546-9415. Comments: pads take up too much space inside helmet. considering getting one size bigger helmet to compensate for the pads however i am considering the extra bulk as a "con". HM2, USN (FMF)

6 Oct 2013: Kits: 8. Hometown: Seaford, NY. Heard About us: Another PLT CDR. Duties: EOD. Current Pads: MSA, 1", Gray. Comments: The current pads are stiff as a board. PLT members frequently describe that the pads do not form to the head and cause headaches and uncomfortable fit.  LTJG, USN.

27 Aug 2013: Kits: 1. Hometown: Portland Oregon. Heard About us: Fellow SOF and EOD operators. Duties: Explosive Ordnance Disposal - Counter Improvised Explosive Device Defeat procedures during SOF and conventional operations in Afghanistan. Current Pads: Standard ACH issue from MSA. Comments: MSA, black and green. My job is 90% at night, utilizing NODS, coutnerweights and comms sets. Current pads compress too easily and cause hot spots on head and cranial fatigue. Thank you so very much for this service.  OE1, USN.

11 Mar 2013: Kits: 8. Hometown: Orlando, FL. Heard About us: Team Leader. Duties: EOD. Current Pads: MSA 09/2010. Comments: We have herd so many great things about you guys... Thank you so much!!!! EOD3, USN.

10 Dec 2012: Kits: 1. Heard About us: Senior Chief CORPSMAN. Duties: Direct interaction with civilian population. Foot Patrol, stability operations. Current Pads: Standard Helmet Padding. Comments: I feel my current pads accelerate my balding. But seriously, provides a stress point on the top of my head. LT, USN.

25 Nov 2012: Kits: 21. Hometown: Hershey, Pa. Heard About us: EOD company we are relieving. Duties: My EOD company and I are forward deployed to Afghanistan providing EOD support. Current Pads: MSA Pads, 3/4" - green. Comments: We have been on 18+ hour calls and after only a few hours, the pressure points of the pads become extremely uncomfortable.  LTJG, USN

30 Oct 2012: Kits: 1. Heard About us: USO. Duties: EOD. Current Pads: "MSA advanced combat". Comments: outstanding program, thank you very much! GM1, USN.

1 Jul 2012: Kits: 8. Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA. Heard About us: A fellow team in theater. Duties: EOD. Current Pads: MSA, NSN, OPS-Core Occ-Dial Liner Kits. 8 guys, 8 different set ups. Comments: The guys are constantly complaining of headaches, and hot spots from wearing our helmets for multiple hours in the vehicles, and on foot patrols.  Individual complaints about current pads: too stiff, creates hot spots, headache after less than an hour of wear, and helmet pad sizes having to be "custom-cut" for proper helmet fit reducing padding thickness.  We all would greatly appreciate any and all donations that could be sent our way. Thank you very much for you help. EOD3, USN.

11 May 2012: Kits: 1. Heard About us: google. Duties: Convoy. Current Pads: felt like material with rock hard padding. Comments: Pressure on my head causing headaches, very uncomfortable. SMN, USN.

3 May 2012: Kits: 10. Heard About us: Another platoon. Duties: Deploying with SEAL team to provide EOD support. Current Pads: MSA 1" pads. Comments: We are issued the half shell helmets and they come with 1'' padding. My guys are having to cut the padding in order to make it fit to their heads properly. In addition, these pads are creating hotspots making it extremely uncomfortable on long patrols and causing my guys to pay out of pocket for better pads. LT JG, USN.

25 Apr 2012: Kits: 1. Hometown: South Shore, KY. Heard About us: Web. Duties: Security. Current Pads: No pads, old suspension system with leather band. Comments: The current system gives me a splitting headache after a couple of hours of wear. BMCS, USN.

7 Apr 2012: Kits: 18. Heard About us: Fellow EOD Tech. Duties: EOD. Current Pads: MSA. Comments: Current pads are hard and uncomfortable for extended periods of wear. Addtionally, pad sizes provided do not allow for proper helmet fit on several personnel (helmet sits too high on the head). LTJG, USN.

21 Jan 2012: Kits: 2. Hometown: POINT PLEASANT, NJ. Heard About us: ACCIDENT, CAME ACROSS YOUR WEBSITE. Duties: COMMO, CONVOY. Current Pads: MSA. Comments: I only have 4 small pads in my helmet at the moment, no top round pad. PO3, USN.

6 Nov 2011: Duties: Hospital Corpsman. Current Pads: NSN. Comments: They give me a headache. they don't completely cover the velcro so it presses into my forehead. HMC, USN.

20 Oct 2011: Hometown: OCEANSIDE, CA. Heard About us: INTERNET ARTICLE. Duties: RECONSTRUCTION. Current Pads: NONE. Comments: N/A.  LTJG, USN.

12 Oct 2011: Heard About us: OTHER EOD TECHNICIANS. Duties: EOD. Current Pads: SKYDEX. Comments: WEARING HELMETS FOR EXTENDED PERIODS OF TIME, PADS ARE THIN AND OFFER LITTLE PADDING WHICH CAUSE DISCOMFORT. LTJG, USN.

5 Oct 2011: Duties: Builder. Current Pads: Skydex. Comments: I am constently in My Battle rattle as an crewserve instructor, and now that i am preparing to go back down range my pads are in need of replacing. I went to our supply and they offered me old worn down pads and kit. The tension that this kits creates on my cranium is painfull and it feels like i have been hit in the head with a hammer after wearing it. PO2, USN.

28 Sep 2011: Heard About us: I purchased one of your kits when I was in Iraq. Duties: Battalion Chaplain- traveling to 20+ posts providing chaplain services. Current Pads: NSN 8470-01-546-9415. Comments: It's a very "hard fit", in less than an hour an its creating discomfort, and headaches. LCDR, USN (FMF)

5 Aug 2011: Heard About us: Friend. Duties: Supply operations support to Afghan National Police. Current Pads: Mine Safety Appliance Co. Comments: Current pads hurt my head. I usually have a killer headache within an hour of wearing my ACH.  LT, USN.

20 Jul 2011: Duties: Chaplain. Current Pads: Gentex. Comments: Thank you. CDR, USN

20 Jul 2011: Duties: Personal Security for Roman Catholic Priest. Current Pads: Gentex Corporation. Comments: Hard on the head. Not very comfortable. RP1, USN (FMF)

18 Mar 2011: 18 Mar 2011: Heard About us: A MARINE IN MY SQUAD. Duties: CORPSMAN/ COMBAT MEDIC ADVISOR FOR ANP. Current Pads: MSA. Comments: CURRENT PADS ARE RIDICULOUSLY RIGID. THEY GIVE ME HEADACHES, CREATE PRESSURE SPOTS AFTER SHORT TIME OF USE DURING TRAING OPS FOR DEPLOYMENT. CAUSE POOR CIRCULATION ABOVE TEMPLE, WHICH IS VERY PAINFUL EVEN AFTER MULTIPLE TIMES OF READJUSTING. AFTER A FULL DAY OF WEARING I EXPERIENCE INTENSE THROBBING, PAIN FROM WEAR PADS REST ON MY HEAD, AND A MIGRAINE THAT DOESN'T GO AWAY. HM, USN (FMF)

11 Mar 2011: Duties: Communicator Current Pads: MSA 3/4 " Comments: Pads make the helmet feel a little tight no matter how I adjust or configure them. IT1, USN.

13 Dec 2010: Duties: Forward Observer (FO). Current Pads: None. Comments: Issued old style Kevlar helmet, no pads. CW3, US Navy.

29 Sep 2010: Duties: Infantry. Current Pads: Don't know. Comments: Hello Dr. Meaders I hope you remember me, weeks ago you sent me 10 pads for my fellow corpsmen in my company, they received them, and they thank you. Now my unit is deploying to assit In OEF very soon and almost 100% of them would benefit greatly from a new set of new pads, and I have spoken to the supply officer in my unit, he told me that he has close to 100 marines in [opsec] CO leaving for training soon. I thank you in advance, and thank fortaking care of us Marines, and Navy. HM3, USN (FMF)

9 Sep 2010: Duties: Fire Support. Current Pads: None. Need size 4 helmet pads with 4-point chin straps. Our ANGLICO is the only ANGLICO that is poorly equipped. Comments: Don't have any pads. HM1, USN (FMF)

19 Jul 2010: HOSPITAL CORPSMAN FMF Comments: My Kevlar does not have any pads, so when I go into the prone shooting position the weight of the helmet covers my eyes making it impossible to shoot, also gets hard to use Night Vision Goggles when the helmet keeps moving cause there is no stabilization. Thanks for your help! HM3, USN(FMF).

11 Jul 2010: Duties: Navy Corpsman attached to an infantry company Comments: The current pads are hard and stiff therefore my helmet likes moving around and make it very difficult while trying to treat a patient, sometimes i end up taking it off all together to i can see what im doing. Thank you for what your doing here we are all very grateful. HM2, USN (FMF)

9 Jan 2010: From Afghanistan: I can't express my appreciation enough for the padding upgrades you sent.  We started to distribute the padding today, first to our water-well drilling team.  We'll be prioritizing the remainder by who will be performing missions outside the FOB.  Our water-well team is slated to be outside the wire performing shallow and deep well drilling in country.  There's plenty of potential to get clobbered from up above by falling steel.  Just yesterday a 18 foot segment of the drilling pipe slipped out of the sleeve, just missing one of the operators.  That near miss reinforced the need for properly fitting and padded helmets.  The team was very excited to receive the new padding and wanted me to relay their appreciation as well. 

30 Nov 2009 - I am requesting 10 kits to outfit fellow docs and marines, however, if you would like to send more, I will make sure they get to needed personnel. I just returned from Iraq 3 months ago and we are headed out in 3 months, so my gear is worn but these kits would have made long patrols more bearable. Thank You.  HM3, Navy FMF.

15 Aug 2009 - 4th LAR is deploying. We are a reserve unit being activated and I have no idea if or when we are getting updated supplies. Currently I'm still using the helmet with the leather strap. Shooting the s__t with a marine, he saw my helmet and told me about your upgrade kit. I have a very old and heavy helmet. It has one button at the chin strap and it's the oldest design still in use. I believe the boots still use it during boot camp but here we are using it for training too. Whether or not we get new ones....HM, Navy

24 Jul 2009 - Medic. We are deploying this year and my standard issue padding is not comfortable and blocks my eyes when in prone position.  also causes headaches.  HM3, Navy

3 Jun 2009 - We are a provincial reconstruction team heading to Farah Afghanistan to help rebuild that region of the country, multiple convoy's and meeting with the local leaders outside the wire.  I have several sailors and soldiers that comp of chronic headaches and pain.  LT, USN

30 Apr 2009 -  I just receive a brand-new USMC-LW helmet(still in plastic bag when I got it) in early March and wore it steady for a two week training exercise in Mississippi; consequently, the center pad is already flaking up. Also, for those two weeks I had to keep removing my helmet to relieve the tension headache that it was causing me!  My HM's (medics) and I are going OCONUS in the mid fall of 2009 and I would like to have all my gear ready prior to avoid any delays at the last minute.  Many thanks to you folks, and GOD BLESS YOU.  LCDR, USN (FMF)

18 Dec 06 - Good afternoon Dr. Meaders,  I am dumbfounded, speechless, and thankful all at once! I cannot believe that you were able to turn around my order so quickly. From everyone here at DCMA Balad, THANK YOU!  Sincerely, xxxxx, U.S. Navy, LSA Anaconda, Balad Iraq (Note: Request made 17 Dec; 5 kits shipped on 18 Dec)

22 Nov 06 - I love the way the system works. I have many people inquire on where I ordered mine from, and now I'm working with my supply dept. to order enough for my entire unit. Though I have used this in battle, but I'm sure it will do just great.  PO1 R

The pads are very hot in the summer, but in the winter they are very nice. The chin straps don't stay tight. They tend to stretch when wet and come loose easily. It's a great system though. The comfort is amazing and so is the fit. Thank you so much. I have a few marines that I believe were kept from having worse injuries due to the pads. So thanks again.  HM2 J (note: chin strap in the LWH is the factory standard)


21 Nov 06 - The system is great! I have already had several test to the helmet. (IED's) However the pads don't breath all that well and have a tendency to get hot with any kind activity. Even though that is the case think sometime you have to take the good with the bad.  HM2 MS


19 Nov 06 - The Oregon Aero pad upgrade has made the Marine Lightweight Helmet considerably more comfortable. I can't thank you enough for the generosity in sending out the kits. LT JS

 


7 Oct 06 - Dr. Bob, I'm stationed over here and you sent me a helmet several months ago.  It's been wonderful, hope someone else can also benefit!  Cdr PT. [note: he sent a donation]


17 Sep 06 - This program is a Godsend! It is bad enough conditions that we are in, and the situations that we are facing. That ANY comfort item, that makes our equipment bearable is a morale booster. It helps me take care of our guys. V/R HM2 Charlotte


4 Sep 06 - I wanted to take the time to thank you for what you are doing to support the troops here on the front line. I am a member of Naval Costal Warfare Squadron 34 stationed in Kuwait. My unit, Mobile Inshore Undersea Warfare Unit 114, contacted you about providing at least 100 liners for our unit members. These liners have been installed and I have noticed that there are fewer complaints on how uncomfortable the helmets are.  As you know, this will allow more protection for the troops since the longer the helmet stays on their head, the more protection it provides.

Thanks again for providing a valuable requirement that our troops need. Thanks to people like yourself, our troops have the best equipment available.  MS, NCWRON 34, MIUWU-114


03 Sep 2006 - We heard about your site, and we really would appreciate anything you can do to help us. Most of these guys are young, fresh Marines, but they needed a Sailor on this trip. If you could send some helmet pads, it would surely help them feel a little safer out in the middle of nowhere. Twelve pads would help, and twenty would be awesome! Thank you in advance.  CT1 I, Iraq.


Dear Dr. Bob,  My son's 2nd deployment to Iraq is coming up in September. He is a FMF Corpsman who provides medical care to his Marines. He goes where they go! I ordered 4 kits for my Corpsman and his Corpsman buddies. He will be home in early August and I will give him the kits. I am now on a mission to get all of his Marines a kit. I discovered you and your cause yesterday, ordered my kits, received an email that they are on the way. This morning, I made a few phone calls to get some donations. 3 calls = $ 300.00 and this is just the beginning. I was in the grocery store an hour ago and was just talking to this older gentleman and mentioned your product. He pulled out a $ 20.00 and gave it to me! I've never met this man in my life. I came home and put in little prayer jar because I know if I mention this to people, they will give me money for you. Over the next few weeks, I will tap into every resource I have and then I will mail you the checks. I will call every person I have bought cookies from, magazines, wrapping paper. I will approach my local organizations and companies to make a donation.

Being a parent of a solider, I have sent care packages, socks, food, etc...and as I realize those items make life a little bit easier, they don't save lives. I want to saves our soldiers lives! I am now a committed donation raiser. Thank you for giving me an opportunity to really help our troops.

Sincerely, Nancy B, Proud mom of Doc Lavi, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Div


... My husband is serving in Iraq as we speak and his unit was humbled by the precious gift of these liners. Not only did it give them more comfort, protect them much better but gave them a sense that people care about them. Republican or Democrat...support the war or don't...they are still husbands, brothers, son's and Fathers...human beings. They are part of history, be it good or bad. They are part of something bigger than us all.

I want to share something with you all that is forever burned in my memory. My daughter and I went to California to say our goodbyes before my husbands deployment. He had just dropped us off at the airport and drove away. My daughter was standing there with tears flowing. She looked at me and said "Mommy, I just want to be normal like all the other kids!" I wanted to fall apart right then. But somehow I managed to look at her and say "Shelby, you are more normal than you will ever know. You at 11 have a love for country and the ones who protect it more than most adults. You have a daddy who loves us so much he is willing to die for us. So you stop feeling sorry for yourself...put your head up high and beam with pride." I realized right then that I never wanted her to feel sad or bad about what her daddy does. And I would spend every breathing moment I have in this life supporting our men and women. That it does not matter if it's "right" or "wrong" but the fact they are there ... doing what most will not.  I have a saying "There are those who serve and those who are glad they do so they don't have to!"

God Bless our Troops

Tina M, July 1, 2006


To: Operation Helmet

I am a researcher in blast injuries and kinetics modeling.  I am developing extremity body armor with the Naval Research Lab and Office of Naval Research. I like this product and it was MARCORSYSCOM that initially pointed me in the direction of Oregon Aero.  I am using my experience in combat to develop new technologies that will protect our combatants.  My second tour in Iraq will be of great benefit in the knowledge gained leading to further development.  For the first time in my 23+ years in the Navy, I truly feel I can make a difference for the men and women who give so much for us. 

As I head back over seas for my second tour in the combat zone with my Shock-Trauma platoon of Navy medics, I find myself extremely thankful for all that we have in this country.  This is truly a season to rejoice and thank God for all we have.  Please pray for our men and women in combat around the globe. 

I wanted you to know that this is a great thing that you and your organization are doing.  I have distributed the BLSS kits to the enlisted men and women. These kids, and I can say that now as I turn 42 in 3 days with almost 24 years in the navy, cannot usually afford this protective gear.  I am proud to serve with them; they give so much and ask for so little.  I have been astounded at how much they are willing to sacrifice so they can take care of their men, women, and civilians in country.  They truly represent the heart and soul of this great country.

Once again, thanks for caring and your service to our country.

Very Respectfully, Dr T,  Medical Corps,  USN



To Whom it May Concern,
I will be deploying to Iraq with NMCB 3 (Seabees) in about 2 weeks and would like to request a BLSS system for my very uncomfortable Kevlar helmet. I have heard from fellow Seabees that this system is a "must have". Thank you very much for helping supply our troops with quality gear since a lot of the issued gear is below par. I have personally spent over $400 for needed gear and still have about $400 more to purchase. Organizations like this are indispensable in helping out all of us who are going forward. Thanks very much. T...C...

Hello I am a navy seabee and heard about this web site buy word of
mouth and was wondering if I could get one. I am going over seas to Iraq very soon and I was told on short notice so I don't have the money. Plus I also have a wife and kids that I have to provide for so I was wondering if you could send me one my address is 1078 b XXX port hueneme ca. thank you and have a good day.

 

First off I would like to say thank you for all your support and hard work.  I am a Navy Seabee currently attached to NMCB-3 and I am deploying to Iraq very shortly.  I heard about "operation Helmet " through some fellow Seabees and didnt hesitate to look up your site.  I have seen some troops wearing the Harness and have heard nothing but good comments on this product.  I will be doing convoy security in Iraq and will log many miles sporting my Kevlar Helmet.  Replacing my current harness with your upgrade kit would definitely help to make me a more effective and comfortable Seabee.  Once again thank you for your contributions.

OPERATION HELMET,
Just wondering if you have enough funds to send one of the helmet upgrades.  This will be the first time for me going to Iraq. Honstly..I don't want to go and I am scared to death and don't know what to expect.  Everyone I have talked to has had good news about you supporting the troops and sending blss kits with no hesitation.


"I am writing to thank you for your fantastic ballistic helmet liner system.  I deployed with the 24th MEU that saw duty all over the globe including combat operations in Iraq. Your helmet liner system was incredible. It was almost a joy to wear the normally uncomfortable Kevlar helmet. Your product made it so unbelievably comfortable. I can't say enough about this great product. Many of my friends now have it also. I let all who ask me about it know how great it is. Once they try it on, they are hooked."  HMC J.P., USN     


8/8/05: Dear Operation Helmet,

 

My husband will be deploying to Iraq within the next month.  He is currently in training in Port Hueneme.  He had heard of "Operation Helmet" through his fellow servicemen.  I began researching them the moment we received word that he was going to be deployed .  Having a family member preparing to deploy or already deployed imposes unexpected financial constraints and because my husband is a reservist we have had to supply quite a bit of required equipment that will not be provided to him.  And I know all to well that I am only one of many that are faced with the fear of sending their loved one not fully equipped with the safety gear needed.  If funds allow, I am requesting a kit to be sent to my husband at the following  address: XXX (removed for OpSec ) I would also like to thank you for your support of our troops. I know that you have provided many Soldiers, Sailors and their families a sense of peace knowing that they are as best equipped as possible. Sincerely, Heather V.

 

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