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Family Video sets goal of donating 1 million movies to U.S. troops this month

Operation: Movies for the Troops aims for record year

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012 10:27 a.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012 10:46 a.m. CDT
(Nicole Wiegand/Daily News)
Jerry Morris, manager of the Newton Family Video, displays a box designated for DVDs to donate to U.S. troops as well as another larger box already full of donated DVDs that is ready to ship. Morris said the local Family Video store has collected about 500 DVDs to donate to U.S. troops and will be accepting DVDs through the end of November

In what has become an annual holiday tradition, Family Video in Newton is asking its customers to help donate movies to U.S. troops serving around the world as part of its “Operation: Movies for the Troops” initiative.

This year’s goal: provide 1 million movies to members of the U.S. military.

“Movies for the Troops is a way for us to provide a small token of gratitude to our servicemen and servicewomen for their tireless efforts to defend our freedoms,” Family Video president Keith Hoogland said. “Our goal is to allow the troops the chance to unwind with some great movies, and to give them a bit of relaxation to show our appreciation while they serve our country.”

Now through Monday, Family Video customers and visitors to www.familyvideo.com can purchase a movie for as little as $2 to be donated. Customers also may bring movies from their personal collections to any Family Video location for donation, and local individuals who are home-bound may call the Newton Family Video store to have donated movies picked up.

Family Video works with local military organizations to coordinate the shipments of movies to troops around the world.

The program began in 2008 as a local project in South Carolina, but became a company-wide effort last year. Generous customers donated more than 600,000 movies then, and due to the company’s growth in the past year, the company believes the 1 million-movie goal is achievable.

Family Video, the largest privately-owned movie and game rental chain in the U.S., has received hundreds of stories and photos of troops stationed around the world proudly displaying their newly donated DVDs. At a recent corporate meeting, district manager Jason Millman, the man who initiated the program, presented Hoogland with a U.S. flag that was flown over a U.S. military base in Afghanistan on Sept. 11, 2011, as a gesture of thanks to the company.

Hoogland said the “Movies for the Troops” program is a “sincere thank you to those who sacrifice so much to protect our country’s safety and freedoms.”

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