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Operation Troop Appreciation Collects Donations in Moon

The effort, hosted by Moon's Walgreens location, brings in items valued at more than $1,500 for troops serving overseas.

Amanda Thompson said it's the little things that count. 

"It's things like gum," said Thompson, who serves as the vice president for the Pittsburgh-based Operation Troop Appreciation. "They usually don't have gum where they serve." 

Operation Troop Appreciation collected items Saturday outside of Moon Township's  location to be sent to U.S. troops serving overseas.

Shawna Laughlin, store team leader for Walgreens in Moon, said the effort brought in items worth about $1,500. The donations were loaded into a former military vehicle as a part of Operation Troop Appreciation's regular "stuff-the-truck" efforts. 

Thompson said the group collected everyday items that military members serving overseas so often ask for: socks, body wash, board games and beef jerky. 

"The donations have been great," said Thompson, just as a Korean War veteran handed her a bag of canned goods. "They've been coming in steadily all day."

Thompson said Operation Troop Appreciation was founded in 2004 and has provided wish-list items for more than 100,000 troops serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Middle East.

She said Moon's proximity to military bases for the Air Force Reserve, Air National Guard and made it an ideal location for the event. 

Laughlin said the store's Moon location has sponsored other donation efforts for military members.

"Walgreens is really a neighborhood store," Laughlin said. "It's all about doing things like this to support the community." 

Learn more about Operation Troop Appreciation on its website

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