Navy News Service reports that the Navy's LIFELines Services Network and nationally-syndicated advice columnist Dear Abby have geared up to handle the online version of the Operation Dear Abby holiday letter-writing campaign for all U.S. servicemembers stationed overseas. The site, at Operation Dear Abby and LIFELines, was developed in November 2001 as an alternative after the 18-year old tradition, led by Dear Abby, of sending cards and letters to troops during the holidays was suspended following the anthrax mail attacks. To date, more than 500,000 messages have been received for members of all the service branches. Troops can read any of the messages online, and then sort them by branch of military service and by the state from which they were sent. To ensure service members with limited Internet access are able to read the expressions of support and patriotism, a convenient download and printing process has been developed, allowing messages to be distributed in hard copies.

For further information, contact CDR Rudy Brewington at DSN 288-3865 or commercial (202) 433-3865, or e-mail at