ST. CLOUD -- Hundreds of care packages put together in central Minnesota are making the journey to troops stationed all over the world just in time for Christmas.

Last week, Becky’s Troop Care Packages sent off more than 400 boxes from a local post office. For the last 17 years, Becky Carlson has been packaging up and sending care packages and sending them to soldiers. She says she was looking for a way to give back after a difficult loss.

I was, I don't know, looking for a way to give back. I lost my brother in Vietnam and I guess this is just how I decided to do it.

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Carlson says she typically tries to send about 20 packages per month, but the big bunch goes out for the holidays. She says this year each box has 62 different items.

It's not toothbrushes and toothpaste. I do the beef jerky and the breakfast bars, the red licorice, crackers, and I found a company in Wisconsin where I can get cheese that doesn't have to be refrigerated until it's opened. And we do put Lifesavers in every box because they're our lifesavers, they're there for us.

Each box also contains a Christmas card and a handwritten letter.

Every year for Christmas, Carlson also adopts a few families of soldiers serving overseas. This year she will be supplying seven local families with a full Christmas dinner and gifts for the kids.

The primary fundraiser for the Becky’s Troop Care Package Project is an annual spaghetti supper and silent auction. That event is scheduled for March 21st at VFW Post 6992 in Sauk Rapids.

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