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Teens Collect Movies for Troops

Most high school students don’t begin to stockpile DVDs until after finals are over, when they need a way to kill time over the summer. But Olivia Crane and Lars Remole are gathering as many as they can before school ends on Monday. The pair has set up collection boxes at each of Darien’s public schools and Town Hall, taking donations of new and used DVDs to send to troops overseas.

The two DHS juniors got the idea from Olivia’s aunt, who ran a similar drive a few years ago. Soldiers often take laptops and portable DVD players with them overseas, and gather to watch movies as a way to pass the time when they’re off duty. But since they have limited space, they can only take so many videos with them, and end up having to watch the same DVDs over and over.

“Everyone sends care packages  that are just filled with stuff from CVS,” Olivia said. “They don’t really send over anything to play with, and it actually gets pretty boring over there.”

The cause hits close to home for both teenagers. Olivia has two cousins in the service, and her grandfather is a veteran as well. Lars’ older brother, Nils, is in the ROTC program at George Washington University. “He’s going over shortly,” Lars said. “So he’s kind of been an inspiration.”

Collection boxes are now at all seven Darien Public Schools and in the lobby of Town Hall, and will be there until JMonday. Olivia and Lars will then ship the DVDs to servicemen from Darien and nearby towns, who will distribute them among their fellow soldiers. The two families will cover shipping costs themselves. "[DVDs] are pretty light, so it's not too much," Lars said. “It’s a small price to pay for what they’re doing."

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