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Card Campaign Asks You To Put POW Bergdahl On Your Mailing List

Supporters of a captured soldier from Idaho are urging people to add one more name to their holiday mailing list.

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has been a prisoner of the Taliban since 2009.  And organizers in his hometown of Hailey, Idaho are trying to get Christmas cards to him and to send a message to the White House.

It's been four and a half years since Bergdahl was captured near his base in southeast Afghanistan. The 27-year-old soldier is still believed to be alive, but so far there's no end in sight for his captivity.

Family friend Stefanie O'Neill helped organize the campaign to send cards to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

“The idea behind it was to send a message to the White House and the Obama administration that it's time to bring Sgt. Bergdahl home. It's been four and a half years too long, and we're hoping that that message is being sent loud and clear,” she said.

Churches, schools and VFW posts have joined the effort. O’Neill estimates about a half-million cards have been sent to the White House.

In addition, O’Neill and others are sending a second card to the Red Cross. Bergdahl has managed to write home through the international organization, and O’Neill says the Red Cross may be able to deliver cards to him personally.

“I didn't say a lot but I did let him know that his parents were strong,” said O’Neill said of her card to Bergdahl, “because … from what I understand of Bowe, worrying about his family would probably be more important than worrying about himself.”

Bergdahl is the only known American prisoner of war from the conflict in Afghanistan.

Inland Northwest Correspondent Jessica Robinson reports from the Northwest News Network's bureau in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. From the politics of wolves to mining regulation to small town gay rights movements, Jessica covers the economic, demographic and environmental trends that are shaping places east of the Cascades.