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A little mail can make big impact on U.S. soldiers

By Tom Larson

Sun Tribune

A lot of big things occupy our minds this time of year, but it's often the little things that really hit home with the message of the season.

The parents of Morris Area graduate Brandon Leuthardt, an Army Specialist currently serving in Iraq, are encouraging people to send small items to the 2006 graduate known as "Indy."

Cookies, candy, cards or non-perishable food are great gifts that Leuthardt distributes among his company.

The Leuthardt family got the idea to promote the project when they learned that Brandon and his fellow soldiers raved about a shipment of Raman noodles. Then, Brandon's grandmother sent a box of 18 dozen cookies and "the guys just go nuts!" said his father, Dave. "They split it up and share it with everyone there."

"Indy" got his nickname after moving to Morris from Valparaiso, Ind.

"When he moved here, he was home," Dave said.

Brandon enlisted in the Army after high school and was stationed at Fort Wainwright in Alaska. In September, he was deployed to Baquba, Iraq.

The family also encourages those wishing to send items to Brandon to ask about a $10.95 flat-rate box specifically for mail sent to military personnel. The box takes about 10 days to 14 days to arrive.

The family also said the soldiers enjoy receiving and answering letters from children.

Mail for the Leuthardt family's "Holiday Cheer from Morris to Iraq" project is:

SPC Leuthardt, Brandon

A Co 1-5 INF,

1/25th SBCT

APO AE 09336