VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- The United States Marine Corps Reserve has distributed toys to children whose parents cannot afford them at Christmas since 1947.
The Toys for Tots program got a big boost today from Sea-Tow Hampton Roads.
The company, its employees and partners along with area fishing clubs and generous community members have been collecting toys since August, arriving at a grand total of 840 toys, enough to fill a 20-foot boat--not counting the bikes they couldn't fit on board the vessel.
"I look at this and I'm just blown away by the fact that we've able to collect this many toys and be able to provide a child something on the 25th, something for him as well as to support the Marines and their efforts," said Captain Ed Schrader of Sea-Tow.
The stated goal of Toys for Tots is to "deliver, through a new toy at Christmas, a message of hope to less fortunate youngsters that will assist them in becoming responsible, productive, and patriotic citizens."
The Marines on hand today at Sea-Tow say, it is mission accomplished.
"This is amazing to have this many people actually care and to donate their hard-earned money that they work for and just to give little kids and put a smile on their faces for Christmas," said Marine Lance Corporal Edward Leshore. "It's great, so we really appreciated it, all the toys they donated. We appreciate it a lot."
Toys for Tots is an IRS-designated 501 (c) 3 non profit charity. Local campaigns are conducted annually in over 700 communities covering all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Last year the organization receive and distributed $210 million worth of toys.