CFDA Home pageOperation E.L.F.

Operation E.L.F.

In 2017, members of the Connecticut Funeral Directors Association (CFDA) continued their 12-year holiday tradition of collecting for the Connecticut National Guard Service Member & Family Support Center's Operation ELF (Embracing Lonely Families) program. In addition to encouraging donations from the funeral directors and suppliers, CFDA recruited 39 funeral homes across the state to serve as community collection sites for toys and gift cards in November and early December.

"The Connecticut Funeral Directors Association collected close to $6,500 worth of gift cards, toys and cash this holiday season, and that is more than any other year we have been involved so far," explains John F. Cascio, Executive Director of the Connecticut Funeral Directors Association. "It is an honor for our association to support Operation ELF, assisting military families with a loved one in the deployment cycle who may suffer financial hardship as a result of the call to active duty."

Funeral directors and their suppliers carried hundreds of unwrapped toys and gift cards for Operation ELF into the CFDA's 129th Annual Convention at the Radisson Cromwell in December. The association then brought all of the items to the Gov. William O'Neill State Armory in Hartford in time for the Connecticut National Guard Service Member & Family Support Center's annual holiday party.

12 Years of Supporting the CT National Guard Operation ELF

PICTURED with some of the toys collected by the CFDA are:
(left to right):

  • CFDA Executive Committee member Thomas J. Tierney;
  • 2018 President Edward J. Sheehy, Jr., CFSP, CPC, CCO;
  • Executive Committee member Melissa Melin-Miles;
  • 2017 President Robert L. Muccino Jr.;
  • Executive Director John F. Cascio;
  • Immediate Past President Howard K. Hill, CFSP, CPC, CCO; and
  • Executive Committee Member Jacqueline Teske.


The “2006 Community Service Award” of the Connecticut Society of Association Executives (CSAE)

was presented to the Connecticut Funeral Directors Association (CFDA) for its fundraising efforts to help the Connecticut National Guard’s Operation E.L.F. program. The 118-year-old CFDA was honored for its year-round work in organizing funeral directors from around the state to purchase and donate gift cards from stores and gas stations. Operation E.L.F. then sends these cards to families of Connecticut National Guard stationed away from home who truly need help to make ends meet.

2006 Community Service Award
Pictured at CSAE’s Annual Meeting
(left to right):

CFDA Executive Director John F. Cascio;
CSAE Executive Director Lorna M. Bolduc, CAE;
Elsa and Jonathan P. Woyasz, CFSP, Vice President of CFDA; and
CSAE President Charles H.(Chip) Marsh, CAE


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