A military support group recently teamed up with AT&T to kick off a Rhinelander area Cell Phones for Soldiers drive at the American Legion building in Rhinelander. The program uses recycling proceeds to buy and send free phone cards to military members overseas.
“Our country owes a debt of gratitude to our troops that can never be repaid,” said Ray Zastrow, president of the support group. “But we can all show our support by recycling cell phones and helping them be connected to loved ones back home.”
“We are proud to join AT&T to help our troops and their families,” said Sen. Tom Tiffany. “This project is a great way to bring the community together to support our troops and honor their tremendous sacrifices and selfless service to our country.”
AT&T also announced a $2,500 Innovation Award to the military support group, which supports families of any deployed military person in the Tomahawk, Rhinelander and Eagle River area.
Cell Phones for Soldiers was founded in 2004 by Brittany and Robbie Bergquist as a way for military families serving overseas to keep in touch with family back home. With the support of AT&T and cell phone donations by customers, the charity has generated more than $3 million to help connect military members to their families.
Collection points in Rhinelander for this drive include:
• Trig’s Grocery, 232 S. Courtney St.
• Nicolet College, classroom buildings, College Drive off Cty. G
• Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce, 450 W. Kemp St.
• V.F.W. Club House, 120 E. Park St.
• American Legion Building, 1002 Coon St.
• Wal-Mart, 2121 Lincoln St.
Wisconsin residents may join the cause and donate old cell phones by:
• donating old cell phones at any AT&T store located in Wisconsin;
• visiting the Cell Phones for Soldiers website, cellphonesforsoldiers.com, for nearby drop-off locations; or
• printing a free shipping label by visiting the Cell Phones for Soldiers website to mail donated phones.