Operation Appreciation Sends Personal Touch To Troops

Donna Mapes spent part of her work day at AARIG Terminal picking up supplies and donations for Operation Appreciation. The bin outside the Lorraine Road business is an open invitation for anyone who wants to help. Us as an individual we can't do a whole lot but the community can," says Mapes.

Members of Belaire Baptist Church manned the doors at Walmart, giving shoppers lists of items the troops can use. The box steadily filled as shoppers dropped goodies inside. "I'm just proud of what they're doin'," says one man.

The reverand says a personal touch will be a big morale boost for the troops so far from home. "A touch from home and when you're over there you've got to want somethin' from home and what a way to do it," says Lowry Anderson.

At Coast Radio Group, D-J Patty Steel invites listeners to pitch in and show their support. "What we're doing is we're getting together donations, your donations to help out our brothers and sisters overseas who are fighting hard for our country. We need some supplies."

Steele says her listeners came up with the supply drive idea. In the few short hours after it began, the response is overwhelming.

"Our box is full and I know at AARIG down the street their box is full already. We're gettin' calls.  I'm not surprised at all because in the past whenever somethin' goes down, people need help, it just seems like this community, this area, the whole Gulf Coast pulls together for somethin' that's important."

If you'd like to contribute to the cause, you can drop off items at Coast Radio Group or AARIG Terminal Systems on Lorraine Road, Monday through Friday during business hours.  Also donations are accepted at Bel-Aire Baptist Church on Dedeaux Road.