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Woman's donations to troops near benchmark

A Middle Island woman who has been sending care packages since 2003 to U.S. soldiers fighting overseas will pack her 500,000th pound of supplies Tuesday.

Dorine Kenney started sending materials to battlefields after her son, Spc. Jacob Fletcher, was killed on Nov. 13, 2003, in a roadside bombing in Samarra, Iraq.

“What motivates me is thinking about our troops halfway around the world defending our country,” said Kenney, who runs Jacob’s Light Foundation, which has organized volunteers to send the packages.

Boxes have included snacks, warm socks, sanitary supplies and portable heaters. On Tuesday, she and her volunteers plan to pack about 10,000 pounds of items at the American Legion hall in Brentwood.

To add a little holiday cheer, they’ll be including butter cookies, salami, cheese and crackers, Kenney said.

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