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Christmas for troops drive under way

POSTED: September 29, 2007 5:04 a.m.
The third annual “Christmas for the Troops” Stocking Drive, presented by Soldiers’ Angels, is well under way. Stockings will be prepared with goodies for soldiers who are deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan.
There are still some categories the project lacks. Individually wrapped, single-serving items such as granola bars, crackers and peanuts are still needed. Betsy Rhodes, project manager for Soldiers’ Angels, said 10,000 individual packets of hot chocolate and 12,000 “fun” items such as decks of cards, individual hand warmers and anything small enough to fit into a stocking are still needed.
While Christmas cards are coming in from all over the country, more are needed to ensure that each stocking will have several cards.
Monetary donations, which are tax deductible, are also accepted. Checks may be made out to “Soldiers’ Angels” with 3rd ID in the memo line, and may be sent to Soldiers’ Angels of GA, Attn: Betsy Rhodes, 22 Mapmaker Lane, Savannah, GA 31410.
The donation boxes at Nesmith Chevrolet in Hinesville will be picked up by the second week in October, though Christmas cards may be dropped off until Oct. 22 or mailed directly to Rhodes. On Oct. 27, the stockings will be stuffed at the armory in Douglasville.
The armory has been the location used for the past three years to stuff the stockings, and also stores items that are received in bulk donations.
“This particular unit was the first group of stockings we did so they are very supportive of all we do, even when stuffing their hall to the rafters full of Christmas items,” said Rhodes.
Soldiers’ Angels is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was founded by Patti Patton-Bader, mother of Sgt. Brandon Varn, who recently returned from Iraq. It is a national organization with members in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and several other countries. The organization’s mission is to provide aide and comfort to the men and women of the Unites States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, the Coast Guard and their families.
For more information, call Betsy Rhodes at (912) 507-8640.
 

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