Groups team up to collect supplies for troops

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 9, 2003

NATCHEZ &045; Miss-Lou residents who have been wondering what they can do support our troops now have their answer.

Natchez Mall, the Miss-Lou Military Family Support Group and the American Red Cross have teamed up to collect toiletries, snacks, books, games and other items to send to locals who are overseas with the military.

On Wednesday, support group members held a kickoff at Natchez Mall, collecting more than $1,500 worth of donations and items in just two hours, said Christy Waggoner, the mall’s assistant manager.

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&uot;But we don’t have a cut-off date&uot; to collect items, Wagoner said. &uot;They can drop them off any time.&uot;

Items can be dropped off in bins located near the mall office, at Wilson-Holder Drugs or at the Natchez Visitor Reception Center, said Sharon Goodrich, a coordinator of the support group.

&uot;All the money will be used for postage, and (packages) will only be sent to troops with ties to the Miss-Lou,&uot; Goodrich said.

Those wishing to sign a soldier up to receive a package can fill out an application form at the Red Cross office at 211 N. Union St.

Red Cross volunteers will pack, label and send the packages &uot;as soon as we get enough items to send,&uot; Goodrich said.

Actually, Natchez Mall is only one of more than 20 malls owned by Aranov Corp. that are conducting Support Our Troops drives across the nation, Waggoner said.

But perhaps more important than the items themselves is the feeling it gives to families with troops overseas, Goodrich said.

&uot;We had a nice turnout (for Wednesday’s event), and I know it made the ladies feel better&uot; who have loved ones overseas, she said.