Iron Range Organization Gives Back to Troops

By KBJR News 1

October 23, 2012 Updated Oct 23, 2012 at 9:33 PM CDT

Hibbing, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) - It's hard to repay the sacrifices made by the men and women serving our country, but the Hibbing-Chisholm Chapter of Beyond the Yellow Ribbon is making their best effort.

They shipped 26 care packages to Minnesota troops in Afghanistan Tuesday.

"Crackers, trailmix, chapsticks," said member Kasey Donahue of what is included in the package, "We have farkle games, nail sets."

"A lot of stuff that we take for granted every day," said member Jennie Damjanovich of the items.

It's the group's first year sending care packages, which will go to about 150 Minnesota soldiers in Afghanistan. Local businesses and groups Donated the items. Members say the donations exceeded their expectations.

"I figured that a business might bring in a box of items, but businesses actually brought in boxes," said Donahue.

Members of the chapter don't personally know the troops that will receive the packages, but that doesn't matter. No matter where the troops are from, their sacrifices hit close to home. Members say that's part of the reason they're giving back.

"I have a cousin," said Damjanovich, "The helicopter she was supposed to be in got shot down. So she's been right there. We were glad to have her come back."

Members say putting together the care packages was the least they could do for the troops.

"I give them all the credit in the world. It's hard," said Damjanovich.

The group plans to continue encouraging local businesses to support the troops by starting an initiative to get businesses to adopt a soldier stationed overseas, supporting them throughout their deployment.

Written for the web by Jennifer Austin.