Southern Borders Stores Support Families of Soldiers in Iraq

Some Borders customers in the South are doing their part to try to make life easier for the families of U.S. soldiers in Iraq. On Saturday, November 15, for the second year in a row, Borders Books & Music in Clarksville, Tenn., helped kick off Military Appreciation Weekend by again participating in Operation All the Time, a program that donates copies of I Love You All the Time by Jennifer Elin Cole and Jessica Elin Hirschman (Cookie Bear Press, $5.95) to children of soldiers serving overseas.

Through the program, Borders enabled customers to purchase the Cookie Bear title, which they could sign with a supportive message. Last year, some 1,100 copies were bought by Borders' customers for donation. The program began when co-author Cole donated 50 copies of the book to the children of soldiers at Ft. Benning, Ga. Cole then suggested something similar to Kristie Salerno Kent, Borders' metro Atlanta marketing manager, who adapted it for all Borders stores in Georgia.

Cole told PW Daily that the program originated because we "wanted to do something for all the kids waiting for deployed parents to come home. Young kids have a hard time learning that a parent's love is always present, even when the parent is not."

The theme of the book is: "Even when you can't see me, I love you all the time." Mattie Ingram, general manager at the Clarksville Borders, supported the program at her store "because this is an apprehensive time here, and Operation All the Time seemed a good way of serving a community need."


The Clarksville store is close to the large Ft. Campbell Army base, which is home to the 101st Airborne Division--and to the 17 soldiers who were killed in the recent crash of two Black Hawk helicopters in Iraq. "The 23,000 soldiers from the base who have gone to Iraq is half the local population, which means almost everyone--at our store and elsewhere--is connected to the military," said Ingram.

Operation All the Time runs through the end of December. More
information is online at http://www.cookiebearpress.com. --Bob Summer

PW Daily for Booksellers

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