Girl Scouts' 'Operation Thin Mint' Supports Operation Enduring Freedom
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, April 19, 2002 Operation Enduring Freedom troops who missed this year's Girl Scout cookie sale are about to be deluged by more than 104,000 boxes of Thin Mints or other favorites.
To hoopla and fanfare April 9, hundreds of military personnel and cheering Girl Scouts from San Diego and Imperial counties in California watched the first 36,000 boxes start their voyage to Singapore. Truckers loaded 28 pallets aboard a refrigerated container and carried them off to Long Beach, Calif., to meet an Asia-bound freighter.
The Girl Scouts started Operation Thin Mint as part of their annual sales campaign. They invited cookie buyers to buy extra boxes for the troops. The idea, adult leaders said, was to provide deployed U.S. military troops with "a taste of home, a note to say we care."
The preliminary count -- 104,330 boxes, with a street value of nearly $313,000 -- grows as money continues to come in.
In full cooperation with the Scouts, the Navy set a goal of delivering "one box of Girl Scout cookies to every U.S. service member deployed afloat in support of Operation Enduring Freedom." The Navy intends to give preference to West Coast service members, particularly the San Diego- based USS J.C. Stennis Carrier Battle Group.
The cookies are only half of the Operation Thin Mint mission, the other being "a note to say we care." Along with the cookies, the Scouts and the general public wrote thousands of note cards with messages of gratitude and support.
APL and Mayflower Van and Storage donated shipping and storage services. The Girl Scouts' current plans call for the delivery of two more containers to Bahrain or the United Arab Emirates in the Persian Gulf region.
(From information provided by the San Diego and Imperial Girl Scout Council of California.)