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October 17, 2003
Toronto Paramedics and Mac's Convenience Stores thank Canadian Forces troops as part of 'Operation Booster Shot'
Toronto EMS paramedics made a stop at Mac's Convenience Stores today to pick up
donations destined for Canadian Forces troops stationed in Afghanistan.

'Operation Booster Shot' started quite simply. Toronto EMS paramedic Sarah
Zourdoumis sent an e-mail to her paramedic colleagues about her brother, Aesop,
who is serving with Canadian Forces Operation Athena in Afghanistan. Besides
missing home, Aesop and his fellow soldiers miss personal items they can't get
in Kabul, like magazines, licorice, gum, hard candy and powdered drinks. She
mused that it would be nice to send them a thank you package as a pick-me-up.
Other paramedics jumped in with ideas to put collection boxes in all the EMS
Stations, seek out donations from companies, and sign thank you flags for the
troops. 'Operation Booster Shot' was born.

"The initial response was totally overwhelming," said Zourdoumis. "When I told
my brother Aesop what the paramedics were doing, he was thrilled. For the
soldiers, just knowing that people are doing this for them at home is a huge,
huge boost."

After being contacted by paramedic Jamie Rodgers, Mac's Convenience Stores came
through with a large donation of magazines, Gatorade, gum, and candy. "Mac's
didn't hesitate to support our effort to say thank you to the Canadian Forces
in Afghanistan," said Rodgers. "I am really proud of the way all the paramedics
of Toronto EMS, and corporate sponsors like Mac's, are helping boost the
spirits of our soldiers."

"When we heard about Operation Booster Shot, we were more than happy to help
out. Mac's Convenience Stores are proud of our Canadian Forces and we hope they
enjoy the products we are sending," said Peter Chappell, Senior Category
Manager, Mac's Convenience Stores. "It's another opportunity to give back to
our communities, especially when they're far from home."

The Mac's donations, along with all the other materials collected by paramedics
or donated by companies, will be sent to CFB Trenton in coming weeks and flown
to Afghanistan as a thank you to our Canadian troops serving there as part of
Operation Athena.

Media contact:
Peter Macintyre, Toronto EMS, 416-392-2069



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