The residents of an assisted living facility in Marietta, Georgia were treated to a surprise visit by Georgia Army National Guard soldiers on Tuesday, all of whom stopped by to spread a little holiday cheer.

“We wanted to do something to give back to the community,” said Lt. Col. Alexander McLemore, director of logistics for the Georgia Army National Guard. “Rather than conduct an office gift exchange, the Soldiers decided to take gifts for others.”

Those gifts included slippers, warm socks, blankets and home-baked cookies for the residents at Azalea Manor, the Army says. Adding to the good vibes, they also sang Christmas carols, and even sang happy birthday to one resident who had just turned 85.

The National Guard soldiers also played multiple rounds of Bingo with the residents.

“This was the perfect opportunity for us to make a difference,” said Sgt 1st Class Maurika Flores, a budget analyst with the Georgia Army National Guard Directorate of Logistics who was one of 20 soldiers to visit with the residents earlier this week.

These Guardsmen came from Clay National Guard Center, which houses the Guard’s Joint Force Headquarters and two of its brigades.

A majority of soldiers who went to the assisted living facility have deployed overseas, and many more than once. It’s safe to say this Christmas visit to Azalea Manor did them some good.

“Honestly, I don’t know who benefited more from this visit, the residents or our Soldiers,” McLemore said.

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