Old Army Gear Finds New Duty

Over the last year, everything that sails, flies, drives, and trots has been auctioned — from horses and five-ton military trucks to a 747 jumbo jet, Navy cruiser, Army tugboat, and Coast Guard cutter. The sales have included ammunition cans, vacuums, backpacks, bomber jackets, bulldozers, cameras, and medical, audio, video, camping, and exercise equipment. Ever wonder what happens to surplus items retired by the U.S. Defense Department? They are purchased by businesses and individuals who give them a second career in the civilian world. From South Jersey’s Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst and more than 200 military bases across the country, hundreds of thousands of items are sold each year through online auctions run by Government Liquidation — “for pennies on the dollar,” said Tom Burton, president of the private-sector company.

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