~ Please allow a few moments for media and graphics to be completely loaded ~


- Saturday November 25, 2006 -
The Taunton Area Viet Nam Veteran's Association
present Dylan with a truckload of supplies and a check for $2,550.00

Two additional truckloads of supplies were
donated at the Taunton Rally in October.

- Sunday November 12, 2006 -
Brewster, Massachusetts Boy Scout Troop holds a car wash
and donates all the proceeds of their hard work, over $700.00
to support Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops.

Eric Bevans, Owner of the
Mashnee Island Grill & Beach Bar
presents donation check to
Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops.
October 21, 2006

* Click Play " > " to View Video *

- Interview by Katherine Ford -
with cameraman Scott Webb
November 8, 2006

* Click Play " > " to View Video *

Massachusetts Teen Supports
Deployed Troops
By Sgt. Sara Wood
American Forces Press Service: September 13, 2006, 18:00
Dylan DeSilva, 13, of Brewster, Mass., has sent more than 1,000 care packages to deployed U.S. troops through his organization, Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops. Photo by Sgt. Sara Wood, USA Blackanthem Military News, WASHINGTON, D.C. – Last week, a Brewster, Mass., teen marked a milestone in his support of U.S. troops deployed overseas. Dylan DeSilva, 13, mailed off the 1,000th care package from his organization, "Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops." The package went to a Marine first sergeant in Iraq who will distribute the various toiletries and snacks inside to the 1,200 Marines in his company.

DeSilva founded Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops two years ago, taking the idea from a Boy Scout project. Since then, he has relied on donations and the efforts of volunteers to send packages to troops in Iraq, Afghanistan, Alaska and Djibouti. "It's important to show the soldiers, Marines, Air Force and (Navy) that we care for them and that they have support," DeSilva said during a visit to Washington, D.C., yesterday.

DeSilva can send as many as 30 packages a week, which take about five hours to pack and an hour and a half to mail, he said. The packages usually include a bag of toiletries, two bags of snacks, socks, flashlights, powdered drink mixes, cards from children, and blank cards for the soldier to write home with. DeSilva's organization also sends about two packages a week filled with toys for Iraqi children, he said. He recently sent a box full of soccer balls and has sent stuffed animals and other toys.

To get names and addresses of servicemembers, DeSilva relies on referrals from other troops who have received his packages, battalion commanders and chaplains, he said. He hears back from most of the troops who get his packages, he said, and many of them send photos.

In May, DeSilva graduated at the top of his class in the Young Marines program. He said he plans on joining the Marine Corps, but doesn't know yet what he will specialize.

DeSilva is in D.C. with his mother, Michelle DeSilva, and congressional candidate Jeff Beatty, of Harwich, Mass., who decided to reward DeSilva with the trip after hearing of his efforts. So far, they have attended a Washington Redskins football game, toured the Capitol building, and toured the Pentagon.

Dylan DeSilva, 13, of Brewster, Mass. has sent more than 1,000 care packages to deployed U.S. troops through his organization, Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops.
Photo by Sgt. Sara Wood, USA

Dylan DeSilva and Jeff Beatty

Care Packages
THE CAPE CODDER: September 8, 2006
By Douglas Karlson
Sometime in the next few weeks, 1st Sgt. Charles Delcourt of the First Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment stationed in Iraq will receive a care package that will almost certainly bring a smile to his face. It's not just any care package. Decorated with an American flag, Delcourt's is the 1,000th such parcel a 13-year-old boy from Brewster named Dylan DeSilva has sent to troops serving oversees. "It's pretty amazing, he's taught us a lot," said Dylan's mother, Michelle DeSilva. When it comes to patriotism she said, "We should be teaching him, instead he's teaching us."

On Wednesday, family and friends arrived at the East Harwich post office to celebrate as Dylan, the founder of Cape Cod Cares for the Troops, unloaded his most recent batch of parcels. Also on hand was Cynthia DesLauriers, of Eastham whose son, Army Sgt. Mark Vecchione, was killed in Iraq on July 18. "I think it's very admirable because our troops certainly need these, and I know there are a lot of troops who don't get letters," said DesLauriers. She said she was sure the soldiers stationed in Iraq appreciate the packages, and the fact that people don't forget about them.

Dylan has been sending care packages since November 2004, after getting the idea from his Boy Scout troop. He estimates he puts in 15 to 20 hours a week packing boxes, and shows no sign of slowing down. Asked for how long he plans to send care packages, Dylan replied, "Until they get home."

To find the names of lucky recipients, Dylan relies on contacts from friends, and suggestions from people he meets at events like the Support the Troops rally held in Orleans Aug. 20. He sometimes writes to unit commanders for the names of soldiers who don't get many packages. "It's sad that after three years there are still so many soldiers who don't receive letters," said his mother, Michelle DeSilva.

Dylan chose Delcourt, a reservist who works at Shepley Building Products in Hyannis, after Delcourt volunteered at a fund-raiser for Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops in Hyannis last summer. The 20 or so parcels sent Wednesday went to the First Battalion of the 25th Marines. Dylan has friends in the first battalion, and has sent between 50 and 100 care packages to that unit alone.

Included in the shipment was one large box filled with soccer balls for children. Toys are often sent, though usually they're small, like matchbox cars and Beanie Babies. The soldiers and Marines give them to children while on foot patrol. Dylan has even dispatched dog food and biscuits for a K9 unit in Afghanistan after learning that the dog handler was short of dog food.

Most parcels, whose average value is $100, contain a bag of toiletries and a bag of snacks, as well as socks and T-shirts. Last Christmas, Dylan sent donated portable DVD players in care packages worth closer to $300. The items are either donated or purchased with contributions. At a fund-raising even in May, Dylan raised $13,000 in cash to help fund the project. He estimates he's spent close to $20,000 so far.

Because the packages go to Army post offices, continental U.S. postage rates apply. The cost averages about $12 per parcel said Harwich Postmaster Glenn Cook. The 1,001st package was sent to an Iraqi soldier who works with the Marines. Not all parcels go to Iraq. Dylan has sent care packages to Afghanistan, Alaska and to a helicopter task force in Djibouti.

Dylan has received hundreds of thank-you letters, which he saves in an album. In some of the thank-you notes, said Dylan's mom soldiers write that they know they think they're losing support at home. That has inspired Dylan to work even harder she said. "It's really cool, it's really humbling, because these guys are over there fighting and they're saying thank-you to us," said Dylan's sister, Torri, 15, who helps with what she calls the "secretarial work."

To recognize Dylan's efforts, next Monday afternoon, Republican congressional candidate Jeff Beatty, of Harwich is flying Dylan his mother and DesLauriers to Washington, D.C. They'll attend a football game between the Redskins and the Vikings Monday night and on Tuesday, they'll meet with top brass at the Pentagon, and then take a tour of the White House.

Beatty said he wants to help duplicate DeSilva's program nationwide, and said instructions about how to organize similar programs will be available on Dylan's website, capecod4thetroops.com . "For a young man he's quite a leader. He's done a good job" said Beatty.

Sunday August 20th, 2006 at Eldredge Park in Orleans, MA.
Cape Cod Cares for our Troops serveral truck loads of supplies
and over a $1000.00 in monatary donations.

* Click Play " > " to View Video *

is where the old media meets the new.

Each week Kevin & Gregg give voice to the work of the most
influential leaders in the new media/citizen journalist revolution.
This unique show brings the best of the blogs to your radio
every Sunday evening at 8pm EST on AM680 WRKO...Boston.

Dylan on air with Kevin & Greg
August 14, 2006

Dylan DeSilva (center) with the Leathernecks



Kathy Sullivan, right, president of the American Legion Auxiliary and Laura Chase help hold a large American flag during the rally in Sandwich.
Staff Photo: Gabrielle Pluckette



During the rally, Danny Meservey, 13 helps sort donated food to be sent to U.S. Troops seaving overseas. Toiletries, candy and toys also were gathered for the care packages.
Staff Photo: Gabrielle Pluckette

To The
June 25, 2006

SANDWICH - The red, white and blue umbrellas could only block some of the rain that fell on the green fields behind the Henry T. Wing School yesterday. But for several hundred people, enduring the damp weather was a small price to pay to support troopsstationed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

''It definitely helps,'' Shannon Smith of Dennisport told the crowd. ''Thank you so much for everything you do.'' Smith, 21, has already been injured in Iraq while serving with the 536th Maintenance Company 17th Corps Support Battalion. She plans to go back in August with Fox Company 2-10th Brigade Support Battalion out of Fort Drum, N.Y.

Yesterday, Smith was surrounded by veterans of past wars, families of men and women who have served and several local politicians.The rain did little to dampen the flag waving, hand shaking and camaraderie. One group held a large American flag while standing in the driving rain.

At a bandstand, members of the American Legion and the Sandwich town band were joined by 13-year-old Dylan DeSilva of Brewster. Dressed in Marine Corps camouflage, Dylan was invited because of work hehas done to support the troops over the past year and a half.

Dylan has organized shipments of nearly 800 care packages to soldiers overseas, according to his mother, Michelle DeSilva. ''He has 600 guys on a waiting list,'' she said.

Yesterday, an assembly line of Dylan's family and friends accepted bags of toiletries, candy and toys to be organized in care packages.

Since Dylan sent the first package as a Boy Scout the idea has caught fire, Michelle DeSilva said. Dylan, who plans to join the Marine Corps when he turns 18, said he is going to keep sending packages ''until the troops come home.''

In the meantime, he will continue to raise money and collect items for men and women he may never meet.









Young Marine PFC Dylan DeSilva

Hyannis Event
Honors U.S. Troops
By ERIC GERSHON May 29, 2006

HYANNIS - What goes around, comes around - that's why 13-year-old Dylan DeSilva has a scrapbook full of thank-you notes from war zones. Since 2004, when Dylan's Brewster Boy Scout troop mailed a care package to an alumnus-turned-Marine serving in Iraq, Dylan has sent more than 700 similar packages overseas, mainly to soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. ''Dylan didn't want to stop,'' said his mother, Michelle. In the coming year, he plans to send another 700 packages of toothpaste and tube socks, candy and DVDs. Yesterday, he began rounding up the donations to do it.

He had help from friends like Lt. Col. Cyril Rourke of the Air Force Reserve. At noon, Rourke, 56, who last year served six months in the Middle East, stationed himself upright on a flatbed trailer parked at Capetown Plaza, near Kmart, facing Route 132. Four other men followed close behind, each in the uniform of his rank and service. They stood at attention for an hour, five abreast, facing the sun, unflinching, it seemed, as passing cars beeped in support. More than 30 servicemen and women were scheduled to relieve them hourly through the night in a tribute and fundraiser billed as ''The 2nd Annual Troops in the Spotlight.'' Come dusk, organizers planned to illuminate the sentries from below. A smaller-scale version of the event raised $6,000 last year.

Dylan, a Tenderfoot with Boy Scout Troop 73 of Brewster, is scheduled to stand watch for the final hour, from 11 to noon today, ''just to honor our troops, past and present,'' he said. The group that formed around Dylan to serve his cause, Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops, hopes to raise $10,000 from visitors to put toward the next round of care packages. Among yesterday's donors were schoolchildren from Hyannis East Elementary School, who presented the group with $675 converted from penny contributions and about $800 overall. Schooled at home by his mother, who said Dylan's grandfathers served in the military but neither parent and none of his three siblings did, Dylan hopes to attend a technical high school, then join the Marines.

Michelle DeSilva anticipates that day with pride and fear. ''Of course, as a mother - this is my baby - it scares me,'' she said. ''But I admire him. He's always had a goal.'' From the letters in his scrapbook, Dylan might glimpse a bit of what could be in store for him. Wrote one soldier, ''Being in Iraq is very different from being at home.''

~ Jon Lee Lambrou / Dylan DeSilva / Suzanne Tonaire ~

"HOMEFRONT HERO..." Thursday May 25, 2006
Interview with Dylan DeSilva and Jon Lee Lambrou
by Suzanne Tonaire

* click play to listen

Cape Cod family really
'Cares for Our Troops'

By Senior Airman James Regan
102nd Fighter Wing Seagull: April, 2006

A workbench packed with boxes sits in the center of long, narrow room. The walls are lined with collapsible tables, which are crowded with bins. Candy, clothing and toiletries are piled high in each of the containers. There is a pair of windows, but not much light comes through on this winter morning. "You usually can't see the windows at all. We always have shaving cream and toothpaste stacked high," Dylan DeSilva said. "The electrician told me he would come over whenever things clear out. So, we figure we won't see him for a couple of years," added his mother, Michelle. Dylan along with his sisters Jaime and Torri, brother J.D., Uncle Jon, and his parents Michelle and Paul, are better know as Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops.

This nonprofit organization is responsible for sending more than 600 care packages To military men and women serving overseas. Originally intended to include two bedrooms, kitchen and a mudroom, the 100-square foot addition to the family's Brewster home now looks more like a warehouse for major product line. It serves as the headquarters for the organization. Originating from a Boy Scout project, the idea for the organization was Dylan's. One of his Scout leader's sons was in Iraq and Pack 73 provided him regularly with care packages. Once he returned home, Dylan and his family thought they should continue the good work.

Earlier this year, the 102nd Fighter Wing invited the family to the base for a tour and a special presentation from several unit members. After a warm introduction by wing commander, Col. Paul Worcester, Master Sgt. Ken Boyd presented the family with a flag on behalf of the Honor Guard. Later, the maintenance squadron supplied the family with several boxes of donations to be used for care packages. Several Airmen also stopped by to greet the family and say "thank you." Master Sgt. Chris Anderson of the 253rd Combat Communications Group, who spent time in Afghanistan and received a package from the family, said, "They were a constant Reminder of why we were over there and what we have to look forward to when we returned home."

As a way to bring attention to military personnel, the DeSilva family put them in the Spotlight - literally. They organized last years "Troops in the Spotlight" in less than a month and with the help of a flatbed truck, company donations, private donations and several willing service members, it was a success. So much so, that it is now a yearly event. The second annual "Troops in the Spotlight" will take place on Memorial Day Weekend In the Kmart Shopping plaza on Route 132, Hyannis. Starting at noon and continuing for 24 hours, military personnel representing every branch of the service will be standing at attention. Everyone involved is confident that this year will be even better than the first and the bar has been set high. Radio station PIXY 103 gave away concert tickets, t-shirts were sold, ribbons were handed out, a flatbed truck served as the platform for the troops, and there was a separate tent for organizing donations. Everything ran as planned until Dennis-Yarmouth High School showed up with 1,200 items as part of its truckload of supplies. It was incredible and a great surprise, added Mrs. DeSilva, with a laugh. Turning a bit more sentimental, she recalled the parents who handed the DeSilvas "crumpled pieces of paper" with their kid's names on it. They were fighting overseas and the DeSilvas immediately made getting them packages a priority. New additions to this year's event include two hours dedicated to police and fire departments. Cruisers and trucks from every town will enter the Kmart Plaza during their respective hour and drop off their department's donations.

While most of the people the DeSilvas have met have been supportive, they have encountered some who weren't. Once when Dylan was sending out one of the weekly shipment of boxes at the local post office, a customer waiting behind him became impatient. The postal employee came out from behind the counter and explained to her that "there's nothing you're mailing that is more important than what he's mailing," Mrs. DeSilva said. But due to the press coverage the family has received, they know most people understand their focus.




Initially, Michelle and Paul DeSilva were unsure about allowing any press to interact with the family. Harboring the felling that it shouldn't be about them, just about the troops, they declined interviews and appearances. However, after discussing it as a family, they decided it would be best to bring attention to their cause. And the coverage has helped.

Dylan has appeared on Fox News and chatted with MSNBC's Joe Scarborough, while Torri manned a fire truck in the Falmouth Christmas Parade. The organization is mentioned daily on PIXY 103, due in part to program director Suzanne Tonaire's enthusiasm for the cause.

Ms. Tonaire - better known as the Rock Babe - is excited about the upcoming events and the inception of the PIXY Platoon. Listeners can "enlist" on the station's web site and by doing so, receive emails about upcoming events. In the near future, there will be an "item of the week" - whatever is in low supply for the DeSilva family. "We're committed with them until the end and hopefully there will be an end in sight soon," said Suzanne.

Of all the recognition the family has received, perhaps the most illustrious was the letter sent by President Bush. After hearing his State of the Union address, the family sent him a sample care package and to their surprise, received a response. Andrew Card, the president's chief of staff, also sent a letter of his own.

The DeSilva's now have their own version of "mail call" and it's taken quite seriously - just ask Torri, who was locked out of the house by Dylan after she reached the mailman before he did. The family insists they never expected any responses, but do admit that when one arrives, it's the highlight of their day. A grin creeps across J.D.'s face when he recounts the story of one soldier in particular. "He never got any mail, so he never bothered going to mail call. When they called his name (for our package) somebody had to run and get him" A fellow soldier then sent the DeSilvas a letter telling then what it had meant to his friend. "He'd been over there for six months and he hadn't received any mail or packages. We've probably sent him at least one a month, if not more," JD added. Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops helps many troops beyond Cape Cod. When Army Pvt. 1st Class Joshua Sparling was recovering from a gunshot wound he suffered in Iraq, a deceptively innocent card reached his bed at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington. The cover was decorated with kindhearted pictures, but it contained a truly repulsive message. The supposed elementary school author wrote... "Dear Soldier, Have a great time in the war and have a great time dying in the war. From Miguel P.S. Die..." The DeSilvas immediately sent emails to everyone they know in order to combat this hatred.

Working with his family, Dylan DeSilva
is the prime mover behind the Cape Cod
"Cares for Our Troops" program.
They have purchased a portable DVD player with their fund-raising money and sent that to Joshua as well. The family has tried to construct a schedule for assembling the care packages, but that's proven to be difficult. One person will come out to work on a few things, but then they'll all end up out there, said Mrs. DeSilva "Last night, we came home and there were two or three of our friends at our house putting together packages," she said. The biggest out of pocket expense the family endures is the actual shipping. There are also items that are always in constant demand, like coffee and Slim Jims. Anything that comes in a travel size is always highly sought after. For this reason, the family is negotionating a deal with Kmart and BJ's Warehouse to purchase supplies in large quantities. "we go in one morning and the employees will think their sections are all set and by the time we've left, we have wiped out have the Section," Mrs. DeSilva said.

The selflessness of U.S. military personnel continues to surprise the family the most. Toys were not included in the care packages until emails were received asking for them…not for our soldier's entertainment, but to give to Iraqi children. They've proven to ease tension when families drive their vehicles through mandatory checkpoints. The soldier's lighthearted jokes about intense situations also surprise the family. Retired Brid. Gen. Sam Shiver, who gave Dylan his personal German flight jacket, said that what makes the family's work truly tremendous is the small size of the organization. With a core group of only six people, Cape Cod Cares for our Troops is accomplishing exceptional tasks.

Cape Cod Cares for Our Troops
P.O. Box # 1444 Harwich, MA. 02645
(774) 216-9052