San Diego County residents are once again caught up in the holiday spirit, evidenced by their generosity in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots campaign conducted at County airports in December.
On Saturday, December 10, U.S. Marines in full-dress uniform collected toy donations at Ramona Airport. Collections included 35 bicycles along with other toys that filled two 7-ton trucks, two Marine Corps vans and 50 collection boxes. According to Bo Donovan, Ramona Airport Manger, “The Marines were kept busy, not only receiving the toys and thanking those who brought them, but also calling for more vehicles, boxes and personnel. ”
Toys came in on bicycle, in vans and cars, and were even delivered via “air freight,” flown in on private aircraft from other airports in the region.
The following Saturday, at Fallbrook Airpark, the Toys for Tots collection was the biggest to date for that airport. Twenty-seven collection boxes came in overflowing with toys, enough to fill a Chevy Suburban seven times over. The Fallbrook High School wood shop presented hand-crafted, wooden toys they made in the “old school” style. The Warrior Cheer Team was on hand and gave a rousing cheer for everyone who dropped off toys.
In addition to the many vehicles filled with toys, $5,250.00 was received in cash donations.
County Airports has been a partner with the Marines in their Toys for Tots drive for the past five years, and according to Donovan, this year’s events were, by far, the most successful ever
“I’m sure these toys that our local residents presented to our Marine Corps volunteers are going to make a lot of children very happy. But judging by the smiles on the faces of those who brought the toys in, and a few tears we saw, I’m sure the event also brought a lot of joy to those who donated toys and money and their time. We’re all very grateful.”