ST. GEORGE — About 68 cars and trucks showed up at the warehouse on 3050 E. 450 N. Saturday, where an estimated 11,000 toys including 64 bikes were stored and prepared for delivery to underprivileged children for Christmas. About 265 toy deliveries for the Toys for Tots Foundation were completed between 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Saturday.
“For this year, 2014, Toys for Tots has gone extremely well,” said retired Marine Gy. Sgt. Rick Massey, the Toys for Tots coordinator for the Marine Corps League of Southern Utah. “We’ve got a lot of kids out there, a lot of families, but we cannot do what we do without the support of the community.”
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Videocast by Holly Coombs, St. George News
Toys for Tots, a Marine Corps’ nationwide organization that started in 1927, was created to bring toys to needy children for Christmas. Massey shared his gratitude to volunteers, donors and businesses for making the project a success
“I’m just a coordinator, a middle man, and I want to thank those who have shown their support,” he said.
Car Guys Care, a group of car clubs that organized a toy drive on Dec. 6 and raised $2,396 as well as hundreds of toy donations for the Toys for Tots Foundation, was mentioned by Massey as well as Sunbrook and Sky Mountain Golf Courses for putting on a golf tournament, the Red Rock Running Club for organizing a race; Menchies, Buffalo Wild Wings, and Texas Road House were among others that supported the Toys for Tots efforts.
The Toys for Tots program has all been worthwhile, he said.
Mckinlee Albrecht, 8, delivered presents with her mother, Jamie Albrecht. Mckinlee Albrecht said her favorite part of helping out the Toys for Tots Foundation was picking out the toys for the kids. She said she became excited when children showed joy because of the presents they received during deliveries.
One woman, who had escaped an abusive situation in a nearby state to make a new start in St. George, had Toys for Tots given to her and her children. Iona Ence, who is housing the woman, said she didn’t know what to expect when a bishop from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sought out her help for the woman, whose name is withheld for her protection.
“He said my name kept coming to mind,” Ence said. “We knew we were supposed to take care of her.”
With nothing as much as a diaper or baby clothes taken with her as she left her prior home, the woman was greeted with donations of clothing and love from neighbors in St. George.
“I’m blessed,” she said, “especially coming from a tough situation and having others love my kids is wonderful.”
- 4th annual Car Guys Care toy drive dubbed biggest ever; STGnews Videocast, Photo Gallery
- Wade 5-car giveaway awarded, $20,000 raised for KONY kids; STGnews Videocast
- KONY Coins for Kids, USMC Toys for Tots are in full swing; join the effort
- KONY Coins for Kids gives Christmas to 1,600 local children; STGnews Videocast-2013
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