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OTC students sending holiday boxes to soldiers

By Steve Koehler

Students at Ozarks Technical Community College are doing their part to make Christmas a little brighter for some of our military members in Afghanistan.

Through November, members of various student organizations have been collecting items for “Operation Thank You” that will fill boxes heading to soldiers in the U.S. Army 203rd battalion from Missouri.

The boxes will include wet wipes, Kool-Aid mix, lip balm, phone cards and thank you letters written by OTC’s Middle College students.

“We wanted to do something to give back to the soldiers,” said Jeremy W. Boyts, one of the students involved.

The Veterans of Ozarks Technical Community College student group has been spearheading the effort that should result in more than 100 boxes sent to the soldiers.

“We challenged student organizations to complete the 100-box goal, but we’re pretty sure we’re going to exceed that goal,” Boyts said.

The public can do its part in the holiday effort on Nov. 30 when a fundraiser will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Information Commons Atrium to raise money to pay for shipping the boxes overseas.

Each box costs between $12 and $13 to ship, and with more than 100 boxes being filled, the effort needs more than $1,000. The public and students will be able to purchase food items and customized plastic wrist bands to commemorate the effort with all the proceeds going toward the shipping costs.

Local merchants, including the Billy Long Auction Co., The Deck Co., and Express Press, are contributing to the effort.

Beau T. Cruse, an OTC student from Willard, was injured while serving in Iraq. He wants to make the Operation Thank You an annual event.

“When the solider gets a box, we want to put a smile on his face and let them know somebody is thinking about them,” he said.

Steve Koehler is coordinator of publications for Ozarks Technical Community College.





College Director of Communications

Phone: 417.447.2655


Steve Koehler

Coordinator of Publications

Phone: (417) 447-2666


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