At 92, Movie Bootlegger Is Soldiers’ Hero| NYTimes.com

Hyman Strachman, 92, has sent hundreds of thousands of illicitly copied movies to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. Source:NYCTimes.com. Image removed for copyright avoidance purposes.

Todd Heisler/The New York Times

One of the world’s most prolific bootleggers of Hollywood DVDs loves his morning farina. He has spent eight years churning out hundreds of thousands of copies of “The Hangover,” “Gran Torino” and other first-run movies from his small Long Island apartment to ship overseas.

“Big Hy” — his handle among many loyal customers — would almost certainly be cast as Hollywood Enemy No. 1 but for a few details. He is actually Hyman Strachman, a 92-year-old, 5-foot-5 World War II veteran trying to stay busy after the death of his wife. And he has sent every one of his copied DVDs, almost 4,000 boxes of them to date, free to American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

With the United States military presence in those regions dwindling, Big Hy Strachman will live on in many soldiers’ hearts as one of the war’s more shadowy heroes.

“It’s not the right thing to do, but I did it,” Mr. Strachman said, acknowledging that his actions violated copyright law.

“If I were younger,” he added, “maybe I’d be spending time in the hoosegow.”

Capt. Bryan Curran, who recently returned from Afghanistan, estimated that from 2008 to 2010, Mr. Strachman sent more than 2,000 DVDs to his outfits there.

“You’re shocked because your initial image is of some back-alley Eastern European bootlegger — not an old Jewish guy on Long Island,” Captain Curran said. “He would time them with the movie’s release — whenever a new movie was just in theaters, we knew Big Hy would be sending us some. I saw ‘The Transformers’ before it hit the States.”

Jenna Gordon, a specialist in the Army Reserve, said she had handed out even more of Mr. Strachman’s DVDs last year as a medic with the 883rd Medical Company east of Kandahar City, where soldiers would gather for movie nights around personal computers, with mortar blasting in the background. Some knew only that the discs came from some dude named Big Hy; others knew not even that.

“It was pretty big stuff — it’s reconnecting you to everything you miss,” she said. “We’d tell people to take a bunch and pass them on.”

- New York Times

Wait! There’s more, click over on to At 92, Movie Bootlegger Is Soldiers’ Hero – NYTimes.com to read the entire article. I think that it’s sweet. A WW2 vet bent over a desktop ripping thousands of DVDs to ship over to the troops in the Mid East, it gives them something better to look at than the scenery.

Merry Christmas to all!

12:14 AM and it’s officially Christmas Day! And I’m still at work at the S-Mart since the previous day, but that’s okay because all the staff is here it’s fun! I’m going to take a nice shower as soon as I get home and drop like a log in a hurricane onto my beloved bed shared with an annoying sibling … if that makes any sense, the log part …It’s still cold and rainy, like last year I think.

For the ones who stay awake and keep watch, for the ones in the front lines in the Mid East far away from home and loved ones, whether you get this or not, a special Merry Christmas to all of you and I hope you all get home safe.

Have a wonderful and peaceful Christmas to everyone. May God bless us all.