Marietta group helps troops deployed overseas
by Fox 5 Atlanta
December 11, 2012 10:06 AM | 1586 views | 1 1 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Photo from Fox 5 Atlanta
Photo from Fox 5 Atlanta
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ATLANTA - It's not too late to help out our troops overseas! In Marietta, one local group is organizing Operation Holiday Stockings.

It's all part of the dedicated volunteer work at Operation Stars and Stripes where they are currently working on packing up items to send to soldiers for the holiday season.

Rosalyn-Sue Smith started Stars and Stripes in 2001 in memory of Major George Thompson, whose POW bracelet she'd worn for years. She says she wanted to do more than just stand on the sidelines of freedom.

"I think it's wonderful that we pray for our troops. And we should pray for our troops. But it's also another thing to meet their needs," said Smith.

Smith and other volunteers send small basic necessities to troops that make life just a little more like normal.

"Socks, some of them are doubling and tripling them because they have holes and they can't get any more socks. Snacks, undergarments, things like that. That speaks volumes to our service members," explained Smith.

All of the items are donated. So far, more than 100,000 packages have been sent. Though the cost is just as great as the need, the reward for Smith and the volunteers is on the faces of the service members.

"It is critical to remember that our troops fight for us 365 days a year. And that's exactly what we should be doing. We should be supporting them, and letting them know that we are behind them 365 days a year," said Smith

Volunteers are in need of items requested by soldiers in Afghanistan to help with a boys orphanage. The group is also in need of postage to send the packages overseas.

The most requested items by the troops: Entertainment (Current DVDs/Travel Games/Playing Cards); Snack packs of nuts (cashews and pistachios are most requested); Cocoa/drink mix singles; Snack packs of cookies; and Energy bars/granola bars.

See how you can help at the Stars and Stripes website!

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Monroe S.
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December 12, 2012
I was in Iraq for two tours. As a troop who has served overseas, I appreciate the packages, but I want the donors to understand that a lot of the items they send do not get used. For example, candy and items like disposable razors are often thrown away. We have been in Iraq and Afghanistan for more than a decade and have fortified our bases to the point they resemble bases in the United States. There are items that WILL be used and appreciated. Here are the items most appreciated - Tuna Fish that come in sealed packages. We like that because it is quick protein and we eat that as soon as we get it. Gillette Fusion razors. Those are ALWAYS appreciated. Unfortunately, cigarettes and "dip" (Skoal etc..) is a hot commodity. Please research the unit, as well. If it is anything other than an infantry unit, they are more than likely on a fortified base with access to everything they can possibly want or need, except alcohol, which is prohibited. I was at Al Asad in Iraq and there were thousands of Marines there who never, ever left the wire. I saw care packages go to waste because we had so much stuff we didn't need sent to us. Send the items to infantry units who are usually assigned to small outposts ran only by a single infantry company. I hope this is useful information.
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