Operation Sleigh Ride: About 200 paratroopers to jump today for Santa's Castle

Fort Benning's annual Operation Sleigh Ride to benefit the children of financially strapped Fort Benning soldiers will take place this afternoon at Fryar Drop Zone.

More than 200 American paratroopers, led by one Chilean jumpmaster, will collect toys for Santa’s Castle on post, then conduct an airborne operation and exchange parachute badges.

The toys will be collected this morning, then moved to Fryar Drop Zone where they will be placed on “Santa’s sleigh.”

The paratroopers who donated the toys will jump at approximately 2 p.m., then exchange parachute badges with the Chilean jumpmaster, Sgt. 1st Class Manuel Linconir Gonzalez. Gonzalez is currently assigned as a guest instructor at the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation.

Santa’s Castle is a non-profit organization run by volunteers. Its goal is to provide toys for children of Fort Benning Soldiers who, because of financial difficulties, would otherwise not have gifts at Christmas.