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April 26, 2010, Gig Harbor Wash; Dianne Hunter says she doesn’t know any of the troops. She frankly doesn’t know a whole lot about the military. But she does know that the men and women from Joint Base Lewis-McChord are great neighbors and supporters of Gig Harbor, Hunter’s lifelong home. And she wants to show that her community supports them.

That’s why she has taken on another project to support the single soldiers returning home who do not have family in the area. This project is an extension of the cookie drive she organized in December, which brought in over 5000 cookies for the troops. Now, the First Lady of Gig Harbor is working with spouses of troops, who help prepare the barracks for the single men and women who do not have spouses and families to return to. As each soldier checks back into the barracks, they will be provided with a “bag of essentials” on each bed. A small token to help as the get organized prior to finding time to do their own shopping. The “goodie bag” will include toiletries as well as snacks and bottled water.

Hunter is looking for community members to step up with donations of travel size items such as soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, razors and shaving cream, deodorant and tampons. In addition individually wrapped snacks such as candy, nuts, bottled water, cookies, granola bars, crackers, chips and juice boxes are also being sought.

Starting today and through the end of July, items can be delivered to the Gig Harbor Visitor Information Center, located at 3125 Judson Street, every day except Tuesdays, 10am-4pm and Sundays noon-4pm.

Cash donations will also be accepted.

Want to learn more? Contact Dianne Hunter at (253) 851-3320.