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CARY, N.C. – Kangaroo Express named Cheryl Anthony of Gainesville, Fla., as the official winner of its "Double Salute" patriotic photo contest grand prize. Anthony received an all-expense paid trip for two, a VIP stock car racing experience, and meet and greet with NASCAR driver Kyle Busch at the big race in Bristol, Tenn., on Aug. 23.
The "Double Salute" social media contest, part of the fourth annual Kangaroo Express Salute Our Troops campaign, honored those that displayed their patriotic pride this summer, the company said. Fans were invited to submit their most patriotic photos to the contest tab located on the convenience store chain's Facebook page. The submission with the most votes was selected as the winner.
Anthony's submission, seen above, features her son, an active duty member of the United States Navy, saluting USMC Cpl. Sean Adams, a former classmate of Anthony's son and a close family friend, who was seriously wounded in 2012 by an improvised explosive device (IED) in Afghanistan. His injuries resulted in the loss of both legs and portions of his hands, vision and hearing loss, and severe arm muscle tissue damage. The picture was taken during a neighborhood Memorial Day parade in Gainesville soon after Adams' incident.
"I love this picture because even though both young men chose different paths with the military, they are still 'brothers in arms,' classmates, and best of friends," said Anthony.
Anthony will enjoy the race in the company of Marine Master Sgt. Blaine Scott, who was injured by an IED in August 2006 in Iraq. Despite suffering broken bones and third-degree burns to his head, face, arms and legs, Scott remains on active duty.
Kangaroo Express has been collecting donations for the Salute Our Troops fundraising campaign at more than 1,500 stores across 13 states this summer. Customers and local communities can support military personnel and their families by making donations through Sept. 2, the end of Labor Day weekend. During that time, 10 cents from every 15-stick pack of Wrigley gum sold at any Kangaroo Express store will contribute to the campaign.
This year's campaign supports multiple groups, such as the American Red Cross Service to Armed Forces, the U.S. Veterans Corps., and various state-based organizations.
Kangaroo Express is a division of The Pantry Inc., which operates 1,525 stores in 13 states under select banners.