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Smiles for Soldiers

The Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta shipped more than 100,000 boxes of cookies out troops in Afghanistan and Kuwait.

A tractor trailer full of Thin Mints, Trefoils and other tasty treats sits in a truck lot ready to go. The Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta are donating about 118,000 boxes of their Girl Scout Cookies to troops deployed overseas.

"Smiles for Soldiers" is a new program for the organization's local council. "The girls' customers could buy a virtual box of cookies that we would then turn around and donate to the troops." Melissa Brandon, Product Sales Manager for the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta.

Jameson Brooksher is a 5th grader at Dyer Elementary School. She said she loves being a Girl Scout and supporting soldiers. "It's really exciting," said the 11 year old. "We get to help all these troops and get them all these cookies." Her troop, #1131, donated 217 boxes to those serving in the military.

Berger-Allied Van Lines covered the cost for shipping the sweets. After the Girl Scouts watched as the last batch of Savannah Smiles were loaded onto the truck, they shouted "move those cookies!" And the treats were on their way. "The first stop is to Operation Shoebox in Florida," said Berger-Allied General Manager Rick Waickman. From there, they'll go out to the troops and should arrive to them in about one week.

And the soldiers truly appreciate it. Col. Vernon Atkinson of Grayson has served our country in Afghanistan, Kuwait, Iraq and Qatar. "When you're deployed overseas and these cookies are sitting there, you get a cup of coffee and some cookies," said Atkinson. "You wouldn't think that's a big deal, but to these guys who are deployed, that's a big deal."

The author of this story, Vanzetta Evans, is the Lawrenceville Patch editor.

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