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At 92, a Bandit to Hollywood but a Hero to Soldiers

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posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 10:16 AM

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.

After Mr. Strachman’s wife of more than half a century, Harriet, died in 2003, he discovered a Web site that collected soldiers’ requests for care packages. He noted a consistent plea for movie DVDs and wound up passing his sleepless nights replicating not only the films, but also a feeling of military comradeship that he had not experienced since his own service in the Pacific during World War II.

Something good from something bad? I guess it depends on who you talk to. The Hollywood fat cats or the ones PROTECTING THEIR LIVES on the FRONT LINES.

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.”

What does The Motion Picture Association of America have to say about it???

said he did not believe its member studios were aware of Mr. Strachman’s operation. His sole comment dripped with the difficulty of going after a 92-year-old widower supporting the troops.

“We are grateful that the entertainment we produce can bring some enjoyment to them while they are away from home,” Mr. Gantman said.

Well, if the needs still around I guess I know what I'll be doing when I'm 90.




Mod edit: Edited in link at member's request.
edit on 4/28/2012 by AshleyD because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 10:21 AM
reply to post by silo13

Thanks for the story Silo!!!! May I be the first to Star n Flag! What a hero IMHO wish when I was in South East Asia we had someone who supported us unlike those who were protesting us at Travis AFB when we returned!!!

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 10:34 AM
Thank you for posting this, his generosity kept many of us service men and women from losing it completely I personally enjoyed quite a few of his movies and from the bottom of my heart can't tell you how much that simple gesture of kindness meant to me and my unit during those hard times.

I know there is going to be people who call him all sort of mean things due to legality but if they went thru what I have personally then they would see that a old man's act of kindness saved a lot of us who were on the edge and close to giving up.

Thank you again for showing this its greatly appreciated.

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 10:52 AM
reply to post by silo13

I wish we had a way to send funds for his defense - don't have a lot of money being disabled vet but would be happy as I am sure many fellow bros and sis who served or is serving would want to do! WOW at 92 years of age mind blowing - I just want to shake his hand ppl like this makes me proud I served!

Please readers send this link to all your like minded friends this hero needs our support and thank you for reading this thread!!!!!! Also makes me proud to be a member of ATS when threads like this can spread worthy news stories around the world!!!!

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 01:22 PM

Originally posted by IceHappy
reply to post by silo13

I wish we had a way to send funds for his defense - don't have a lot of money being disabled vet but would be happy as I am sure many fellow bros and sis who served or is serving would want to do! WOW at 92 years of age mind blowing - I just want to shake his hand ppl like this makes me proud I served!

Please readers send this link to all your like minded friends this hero needs our support and thank you for reading this thread!!!!!! Also makes me proud to be a member of ATS when threads like this can spread worthy news stories around the world!!!!

As a fellow disabled vet i'm with ya. They don't pay us much but I would send what I could. Movies and things like that were such a good way to just reconnect with some normalcy when in a combat zone. I hope he will not be charged or convicted especially if he is making no money from it. The movie companies should jump on board and start a program to send movies to the soldiers and name the program after this man.

OP: Thanks for posting this. It's always good to see nice deeds being done even when there could be severe consequences.
edit on 28/4/12 by usmc0311 because: dyslexic spelling sorry

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 01:35 PM
Good for Hy!

No doubt alot better quality than those $2 bootlegs i bought at the haji shops in Iraq.

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 01:45 PM
reply to post by usmc0311

The service was how I got hooked on movies. It was the only way one could view a little bit on home. I am almost envious of what todays soldier has on offer. Computers, email and Skype. I paid a fortune on long distance phone calls which were just moments of bliss and heaven. I cannot imagine what having Skype and web cam in most notebooks. Living outside America I reconnect by downloading American TV shows.

Mr. Strachman provided the next best thing to a phone home call. A brief bit of escapism a brief moment of feeling everything will be okay. Or another way a reminder to what the soldiers are fighting for, our way of life.

I do not understand how on earth Hollywood would go after this hero. Our soldiers at war are not customers. Hollywood lost no money which is the argument against file sharing. I am so frustrated right now as I feel powerless to effect Mr. Strachman situation.

I only hope someone points this thread out to Mr. Strachman so he can see how some of us would like to help and honour him! I wish his defense counsel will see this thread to understand that some of us would help in what little we can to donate to start a donation a fund and publish details. I am also frustrated in my lack of words to say more!

Once again a big thank you to everyone who stars and flags. Sharing was how America was settled and reached out to the new West. Pioneers used to do barn raising for their new neighbours and people shared. That was the pioneering spirit and the spirit which Mr. Strachman was doing by sharing with our men and women! He was not paid and received no monies for his good deeds. Hollywood needs to see Mr. Strachman for what he is and embrace him rather than prosecute him and maybe set up a charity like "Movies for the Brave" by suppling our Men and Women in the war zone first run movies free of charge. Our soldiers are protecting Hollywood and America way of life.

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 06:20 PM
shouldn't the studios be the ones handing out free dvd's, instead of a 92 year old vet.

i mean, it can't cost more than 10 cents a dvd to burn, and shipping most likely would be free.

thats the problem with corporations, they don't see it as costing 10 cents, they see it as losing $29.89.

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 06:34 PM
reply to post by silo13

Do you have a link to this?

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:04 PM
Well, I hope this man finds every situation left in his life somehow turns in his favor. All the luck and good wishes one man can handle should be his. I imagine many a night for our guys became just a pinch easier because of his efforts back in his Apartment making movies.

I'm surprised but very happy to see the Record/Movie people had the judgement and class to not 'make an example'. I'm surprised because destroying soccer moms and college students with 1/4 million dollar judgements seemed to pose no problem to them in the past. Maybe this was one P.R. disaster to far, even for them? Either way, God Bless this man and all he's done for men and women he'll never meet and can only guess how much his deeds have meant to.

The American Spirit, personified.

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:18 PM
reply to post by silo13

Starred and flagged. Mr. Strachman was simply doing something nice.

Successful movie stars, producers, directors, authors are worth ten to hundreds of millions of dollars.

They don't want to share or loose any of their money.

Personally it's insane that Madonna
Rank: 4
Net Worth (in $ millions): 325
Age: 48
Marital Status: married
Kids: 3
Source: music
Source of information:

The rest of you can say, oh that's alright, they entertain, create jobs, etc..............BS


The pay differential scale is so ridiculous it's insane, totally insane.

I will say it again, the rich make the rules the rest of us have to follow.............they have so much time and money on their hands, half of them are dying of drug and alcohol over dosing anyway.

If everyone reading this just sent Mr. Strachman a couple bucks for his defense, maybe it might help.

Hope this thread is bumped up.

But people don't mind paying a "entertainer" millions of dollars while we pay the people who do the real work, the person who gets you your McMuffin and McCoffee, your kid's teachers, the day care worker you entrust you baby to, the person who washes out the toilet you use at work - next to nothing.

Anyone saying these "stars" are worth it is in my opinion nuts.

They are greedy mfs...............most spend more on dope per month then you or I spend on all the necessities of life in several months.

Again, it's a insane planet when we pay people to jiggle around on a stage or pretend phony emotions and begrudge those that really keep the planet running enough to live on.

BTW: Many of the homeless are ex vets, many suffer PTSD.

And our greedy Hollywood stars are over dosing, spending more going into and out of rehab then most of us will see in a lifetime.

edit on 28-4-2012 by ofhumandescent because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:21 PM
reply to post by randomname

Read my location...................corporations own and run America and now it's going global.

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:38 PM
reply to post by randomname

Star for you! Indeed that is what I believed should be going on. My time in the service movies were nor like this! One perceived that this was already going on (Hollywood giving service personnel in a war zone movies)! I cannot believe how cheap Hollywood is. Our heroes must rely on a 92 year old man rather than an industry who will have captive customers for live if these heroes survived these armed conflicts! Before leaving the States I worked for a major New York company as a district mgr and our reps gave to stores and customers in the right place at the right time thousands of dollars a year in freebies. I alone gave away being a top rep $2500 per month in free products! Top reps are given more tools to work with than average ones who still giveaway more product than people realize. When I was green and first hired I inquired how we could do it. The reply was simple, GOOD Business....... and tax deductible (LOL)! My then boss asked me how much it cost to slide my butt across the seat (Out of car make the call and back in) of their company car to which I shrugged my shoulders as I never considered the question before! 1979 money $125.00. We made no sales we were there to promote the product! My point????? The product cost then more than the retail price of 10DVDs today! Good business.... Oh price to GI's in Base Exchange 10 cents above delivered costs, any base any service. Seems to me Hollywood does not gives a rats furry bottom for our Men and Women risking their lives for Corp USA as they made an 92 year old man do what was good business! IMHO! Oh and think how the relatives and friends react to hearing their loved ones under fire review the movie before it hits their home town hmmmmm better advertisement than a trailer on TV! Seems like good business!

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:42 PM

Originally posted by LDragonFire
reply to post by silo13

Do you have a link to this?
Here you go 92 year old doing Hollywoods job for them
Thanks for reading this thread!

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:48 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

Star for you and thanks for being here! I am all for Hollywood making money! It used to be just theater revenue and TV to make their money! Then VCR again on to DVD and now BlueRay. Few industries can resell old product that many times! How much is enough???????????????? The corp I worked for recycled old product as it was pass by sales date! Understand my point?

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 07:52 PM
reply to post by ofhumandescent

Star for you as you understand. LOL Look at successful TV franchises. The star came out of no where then in third year or so he / she is a producer and by end of the series is the executive producer!!!!

How much is enough?

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 08:18 PM
this guy is awesome and has spent more money that I would in doing it.

I run a ftp server where I download torrents for a few troops I know, they can't use torrents as it's filtered where they are at, so I download them onto my server and they can ftp in and download directly from me.

course I cut cable in 1996 and got tired of spam tv, I use adblockers to block spam on the web, my email has spam blockers I thought it was about time to go proactive and block spam from all of my media.

So in 1996 i went 100% with laptop running media servers and eventually xbmc on an old laptop to my tv. I am soon to replace it with a Rasberry PI with XBMC compiled on it, rasberry pi is 35 bucks and runs xbmc nicely.

I use utorrent with RSS downloader so I put in my favorite shows and it auto downloads as it appears instantly onto a network storage device then streams to XBMC.

I also use my hosted site with ftp access to several troops on and off for past 5 years. My cousin is in Afghanistan and he'll occasionally email me requests.

Course I also run a Tor exit node on a colocated debian server as well as teamspeak servers for troops to "call home" for free or to hang out in voice chat rooms and chat with troops in other parts of the country.

it's wild when I get 5 or 10 soldiers on the teamspeak and back then I'd have 2 or 3 in Iraq and couple in Afghanistan and hear them passing info on what they did that day and such, felt like I was listening to top secret info sometime hehe

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 08:29 PM
reply to post by Cito

Thank you for being here and supporting our troops a star for your post and good deeds. I am sure our soldiers enjoy your help. A less stressed soldier is a more alert soldier who is covering his own bottom (CYA) and covering his unit's 6!

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 10:03 PM
reply to post by Cito

Thank you so much for what you are doing too. I love the teamspeak idea and I'll bet that's literally priceless to the troops. I hadn't even thought of it, but it makes you wonder how the Military can have bandwidth for the net but not offer 100% free voice calling back home using a much higher version of it across their own systems. It's great to know you're doing it though and I hope it's a trend, not a rare thing!

posted on Apr, 28 2012 @ 10:22 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

My cynicism is kicking in on this one. I'm sorry.

I wonder when he's going to get sued over this.

I'm reasonably certain it's in the works.

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