Vets collect goods for troops in field

Packages part of project 'Platoons Forward'

LENEXA, Kan. - By the time the week of Memorial Day is over, a group of Kansas Citians will have sent nearly 1,000 "care packages" to U.S. soldiers serving in Afghanistan.

Members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post # 7397 in Lenexa were joined in the endeavor by their counterparts in the local chapter of the Jewish War Veterans of America, a troop of Boy Scouts and others.

For the past week, the vets and Scouts have set up shop outside of six local Walmart stores, where they collected donations of goods and cash. They have taken each day's donations back to the VFW Hall, packed them up in boxes and mailed them to soldiers serving at remote outposts in Afghanistan. They call the project "Platoons Forward."

"It's meant for people in the community to support the troops and make an individual impact," said organizer Sid Linver, a retired U.S. Army Colonel. "That provides a family for them."

The packages include candy, coffee, socks, soap and foods like Ramen noodles. The organizers say the packages are important because they help boost the troops' morale

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