Marines collect Toys for Tots donations in Carson City |

Marines collect Toys for Tots donations in Carson City

Sandi Hoover
Sandi Hoover/Nevada Appeal Charise Whitt of Carson City stops to chat with Marine LCPL Pierce Toomey, center, and Marine Sgt. Ruben Garcia Saturday at the north Carson City Walmart as she donates a toy for the Toys for Tots annual drive.

Shoppers showed their holiday spirit at the north Carson City Walmart by donating mountains of new toys to the annual Toys for Tots drive Saturday.

The Ron Wood Family Resource Center teamed up with the Marines’ Toys for Tots drive for the event. They will be at the north Douglas County Walmart on Topsy Lane today from 9 a.m. to

4 p.m. and will be available again the weekend before Christmas to accept toys.

“I wanted to help because there are so many who aren’t going to have a good Christmas this year,” said Jerry Mott who dropped a Battleship and a Yahtzi game into the collection box.

Mott, who has a 12-year-old daughter, Delaney, said she identified with some of the older children and believes older kids need toys, too.

“Sometimes the older kids get forgotten,” she said.

Marine LCPL Pierce Toomey said he enjoys being part of the toy drive because it’s “a great cause.”

And Marine Sgt. Ruben Garcia said he does it “for the children in need.”

Both Marines are from Reno and both volunteered to work on their days off this weekend.

Joyce Buckingham, executive director of the Ron Wood Family Resource Center, said the toy drive was going very well.

“The people of this community are very generous,” Buckingham said. “We helped 5,200 kids last year and we expect to help about 7,500 this year,” she said. “We’re just trying to get the word out to the community, and we know they’ll step up.”

Charise Whitt of Carson City said she saw the Toys for Tots boxes when she came in the store and bought a scooter to donate as she left.

“I just know how hard Christmas is for everyone right now, and kids need these toys. It’s what they look forward to,” she said.

Sheri Bacon of Dayton was wearing a U.S. Marine Corps. T-shirt when she stopped to drop some Tonka toys into the collection box. She said she identified doubly with the effort.

“My father and my mother and my husband were all Marines, and I have grandchildren,” she said. “I do this for the Marines and I do it for the kids. It’s something I do every year.”

The primary goal of the Toys for Tots program is to deliver, through a new toy at Christmas, a message of hope to less fortunate youngsters that will help them become responsible, productive, patriotic citizens.

Helping less fortunate children throughout the United States experience the joy of Christmas is part of the objective, according to the Toys for Tots Web site. The other is to play an active role in the development of one of the nation’s most valuable resources – children – and to unite members of local communities in a common cause for three months each year during the annual toy collection and distribution campaign.

For information about Toys for Tots or how to help or be helped, call 884-8697.