By Linda Dahlstrom / Starbucks Newsroom
Sometimes the calls would come in the middle of dinner, or during the night when everyone was asleep. When they did, Capt. Thomas Moser would drop whatever he was doing and report for duty.
As a Navy SEAL, and later as a commanding officer, his service took him around the world, separating him from his family for weeks or months at a time. Often, he couldn’t tell them where he was going. Sometimes there wasn’t even a chance to tell his wife or two children goodbye.
But he kept his family close to his heart, always carrying photographs of them during his travels.
He is retired now, after 29 years in the Navy, but all these years later he still keeps precious mementos of his family from that time. Some of his favorites are homemade cards and little picture books made by his daughter, Meghan, featuring a frog or a seal – a little girl’s homage to her father’s training as a Navy Frogman who would later become a Navy SEAL.
Starting Monday and for the next several weeks, his daughter’s art will again pay tribute to him and all the other many U.S. military Veterans, displayed on a special coffee cup sleeve at participating Starbucks around the country.
The sleeve, featuring a backdrop of Meghan Moser’s hand block printed coffee bean pattern in a camouflage design, recognizes the Veterans and military spouses who have been hired by Starbucks. It means a lot to Moser, he said.
“I’m really proud of my daughter and her accomplishments,” he said, from his home in Wilmington, North Carolina.
The cup sleeve is part of new campaign that includes a video, also being released Monday, recognizing the value Veterans bring and encouraging civilians to start conversations with them to really get to know them, said Carole Guizzetti, creative manager on Starbucks brand and advertising team. She helped spearhead the creation of the sleeve.
“With the cup sleeve, it was a two-fold message. We really wanted to let people know that we met our goal to create 10,000 jobs for Veterans and military spouses by 2018, and that we’ve renewed that commitment by adding 15,000 more by 2025,” she said. “But the second fold is why do we do that, and the short answer is because they make us better.”
Meghan Moser said she’s been “creating art ever since I could hold a crayon in my hand.”
Due to her father’s military career, her family moved about every two years and sometimes it was hard to put down roots, one of the sacrifices military families are expected to make.
In each new town, her mother would let her pick out curtains and a bedspread for her room so she could make it her own. And her art – always a constant center for her– also made her feel at home.
“It provided me with something that was always familiar, something I could take with me no matter where I went,” she said. Over the years, she continued making pictures for her dad – on Father’s Day, his birthday or other occasions, even when he was away.
Her love for art only deepened with time. She earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in fabric design from The University of Georgia and then worked in the textile industry. In 2010, she founded Patternseed Design Studio where she creates hand block printed textile art for clothes, home furnishings and other things.
She draws inspiration from the many landscapes she saw during her time growing up in a military family, she said. “I have been cultivating a love for beautiful patterns ever since childhood.”
Over the years her work has been featured prominently by many companies, but the Starbucks Veterans project has special significance, she said.
“I’m truly honored. I never imagined that my father’s career as a military officer and my career as a textile designer would intertwine like this,” she said. “It’s an amazing opportunity.”
On Monday, she plans to take her father to Starbucks to get a cup of coffee so she can show him her work – a little girl’s love for her deployed dad gone full circle.
Steve Stolder contributed to this story.
For more information on this story, contact Linda Dahlstrom