Locally-produced beef jerky getting shipped overseas

WEST CHAZY - Care packages are constantly being sent overseas to troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now, one local business is sending a little something to them as well.

Shane Dutil, the "go-to" man for Jeezum Crow Beef Jerky, a product line of D & D Meats has sent 900 bags of beef jerky overseas, each weighing about a quarter-pound.

In a letter Dutil sends to local organizations and businesses, he explained a friend of his was buying the beef jerky for his son-in-law who was stationed in the south.

"He mentioned that this would probably be the last time he would be sending jerky down there because he was being deployed to Iraq for the second time," Dutil explained in the letter. "All of a sudden it hit me and I went to the back and handed him a bunch of extra bags and I said, 'You tell Chad we are proud of what he is doing and that he is over there so I don't have to be.'"

From there, the Jeezum Crow Jerky Drive was born.

Dutil began asking local businesses and organizations to help fund the drive, which sends the jerky to soldiers affiliated with the area.

"If someone makes a donation or someone just wants to give us a name ... [we can] send it to them," he explained. "We give them an additional 25 to 100 bags and we have them disperse them among their platoon unit. It's more personalized. It's going to an exact name."

The drive, which began about a month ago, has received support from more than 20 businesses and organizations, which helps ease the cost of sending the shipments overseas.

"Our funds are used for buying the meat at cost, exactly what we pay for it from our companies," Dutil explained. "We cut it, marinate it, season it, all free labor intense."

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