Operation Yellow Jacket Sends Supplies For Troops In Iraq

St. Martin Middle School students are saying thanks to Mississippi troops serving in Iraq. "Operation 155th, Yellow Jacket Style" kicked off in January. Since then the school has collected enough supplies to send about 80 boxes to the 155th Brigade Combat team.

The overflow of shampoo, deodorant, and shaving cream makes closing these boxes a challenge. Teacher Lori Brennan wants the collection drive for troops in Iraq to be a life lesson for St. Martin Middle students.

"I think it made a difference because it let the students participate because they knew they were doing something to help someone that they knew. You have some children who have family members in the 155th," said Brennan.

Snacks, candy, chips, seasonings, that kind of stuff. Since the boxes are for the 155th Brigade Combat team there is a chance Rita Keller's cousin and uncle will get care packages. The seventh grader's brother is also in the Middle East right now, but with another group.

"I miss them all. I with they could come home," said Rita. "When my brother comes home, he's going to have to come back for another two years I think."

The collection started off slow then took off full speed when a member of the 155th sent in a special request.

Brennan talked about how "around Mardi Gras, he sent me an email asking for Mardi Gras beads to be able to give to the Iraqi kids. He said the children would line the streets like during a Mardi Gras parade."

Seventh grader Shawn Crabtree said, "They don't have toys and we do. We take advantage of that kind of stuff."

A Family Support Group out of Sardis, Mississippi is taking care of shipping the packages. Soon the students will start another project, a letter writing campaign.