An amazing story of generosity
Dear Editor:Once again our midvalley community has demonstrated the hospitality for which we are famous. It is my great privilege to report in and say thank you to everyone involved. The 2005 Marine Corps Toys for Tots distribution was held at the Basalt Community United Methodist Church this past Saturday, Dec. 17. This year we served both the Basalt and Carbondale communities.Each of the families receiving gifts is referred to the program through the county Health and Human Services office or the local Family Resource Center. One hundred seven children will receive Christmas gifts because of the thoughtfulness of area donors and volunteers. Nancy Hess, spouse of retired Marine Corps Gen. Ted Hess, along with other Carbondale volunteers, gathered new toys donated by so many of you. Hot Mama’s of Basalt sent along several hundred dollars’ worth of gifts for parents. Mark, Mitchell, Marshall, and Gordon Murphy assisted me on Friday in preparing the distribution center for our guests. Our distribution is more than a donation handout. It’s a Christmas party with all the trimmings: decorations, music, lots of cookies and hot cider. Parents are escorted into a large room to choose and wrap gifts for their children while the children are in another room choosing and wrapping presents for their parents. This year, volunteers took a picture of each child and created refrigerator magnets for the children to take home. Presiding over all the festivities were Travis and Sally Potter, Bill and Tania Clark, Tom Munn and retired Marine Lt. Col. Dick and Pat Merritt. The prophet Isaiah saw a day when God would make things right between peoples. “They’ll turn their swords into shovels, their spears into hoes. No more will nation fight nation; they won’t play war anymore. Come … let’s live in the light of God.” In this annual effort, we experience the joy that comes when no child is left out, when each person is treated with care and dignity, and when all of us come together to share the bounty of life. And we also work toward the time when such compassion will not be just once a year but every day of the year.Thank you to everyone who helped make this a joyous holiday for these 107 children and their parents. God bless you all.Rev. Marie GasauBasalt
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