Rhode Island
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    Warwick, R.I.

    R.I. officials launch gift drive for troops

    State officials have launched their annual holiday gift drive for troops serving overseas. Lieutenant Governor Elizabeth Roberts again organized the effort, called Operation Holiday Cheer, which puts together around 350 care packages for troops during the holiday season. She was joined Wednesday by Major General Kevin McBride, adjutant general of the Rhode Island National Guard, to launch the drive. The guard’s Family Assistance Center, the US Postal Service, and the Rhode Island chapter of the American Red Cross also help to organize the program. The program relies on donations of cash and other goods from people and businesses. Volunteers collect items, then pack and ship them in November.