When those who work at Jones Pharmacy and Home Health Care Center, 906 S. Monroe, gather for their annual Christmas party, they can sing an extra chorus of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” - for themselves and those they helped to give a merry Christmas.
That’s what they decided to do - wish Spokane’s low-income families a merry Christmas, rather than exchange gifts with one another.
Rick Jones sent $160 to The Spokesman-Review Christmas Fund on behalf of his employees.
“These employees appreciate your program and wanted to contribute rather than exchange gifts among themselves,” Jones wrote.
Their gift helped bring Sunday’s total to $9,857, for a year-to-date total of $97,680.95. That’s 26 percent of the $380,000 Christmas Fund goal, leaving $282,320 to raise in the 11 days before the Christmas Bureau closes Dec. 22.
That’s a lot of money that must still come in if every low-income family is to receive a food voucher to help with Christmas dinner and a toy for each of their children to open.
And, this morning, more than 1,000 people are expected to register for help with the Christmas Bureau in the former Pay Less Drug Store on the street level of Riverpark Square, 812 W. Main.
This is when things start to get scary at the Christmas Fund desk: When people line up at the Christmas Bureau and the line winds around the corner; when people wait in the frigid December air to get into the bureau with its heat and help. And that help must materialize in the form of dollars, and there is still more than $280,000 to raise - in 11 days.
That’s scary. But every ay there are more people willing to help, to give. The mail never fails to bring a stack of envelopes filled with good will, good wishes - and dollars for our needy neighbors. Before another day passes, won’t you please help, too?
Daisy DeFeyter, Spokane, helped tremendously with her gift of $1,500, as well as an anonymous donor of $1,000, and two people, requesting anonymity, who together gave $600.
William Bates of Bates United Drug, 2173 N. Hamilton, and his staff, gave $500 with this note: “Being a business owner for a long period of time, we feel privileged to be able to help families in our community. Merry Christmas.”
Others giving $500 were Carl and Carol Stark, 1827 E. 35th, who wrote: “Since we have been so fortunate to have so much at Christmas time, we hope that this gift will help those who have so little”; and Deb and Steve Mumm, 8707 N. Kensington Dr.
George and Angeline Dick, 7904 E. Gunning Dr., gave $250; and an anonymous donor gave $200 “in gratitude to God for the many countless blessings that have been given to me.”
Cascade Mobile Home Association, 2311 W. 16th, and an anonymous donor each gave $150. Bill and Michelle Caird, Nine Mile Falls, gave $145; and one anonymous person gave $110.
Those donating $100 were Chuck Way, 806 S. Blake, to “help someone to have a Merry Christmas … in memory of my wife, Maxine, who always enjoyed this time of the year”; Mr. and Mrs. Adolf Nissen, 1001 S. Buena Vista Dr., with this note: “Thank you for giving everyone the opportunity to support a Christmas charity where all the money is given out to those in need, without any costs for administering the fund. We appreciate this so much.”
Other $100 gifts came from Colleen and Keith Simmonds, 3010 W. Beacon, “in memory of our parents who were Christian and loving individuals;” Lee and Evelyn Parisot; Steve and Patti Aspinwall, “in loving memory of our dear friend, Hugh Dressel”; Bruce Rogers, 3326 E. 28th; Helen Ashman, 48 W. 40th; Dr. Otto Stevens, 7110 N. G.
Also making $100 gifts were John A. Peterson, 6404 S. Helena; Alan and Yvonne Edmonds, 308 W. High Dr., “in loving memory of those who are no longer with us at Christmas”; S.L. Wilkins, 1415 S. Walnut; Jack Sandberg, 13700 N. Division, in memory of Jerrie Ann; Joe and Becky Kramarz; 407 E. Elto Dr.; Dennis, Patty, Sheila and Rebecca Doyle, 3523 E. Montgomery; and eight anonymous donors.
The Valley Ladies Wednesday Bridge Group collected $55: “Everyone contributed because the need is so great this year.” Those donating $50 were Ramsey and Aaron Stamper, Pullman; Ethan Allen, 5212 N. Northwood Dr.; Mr. and Mrs. George Planthaler, 9911 N. Waikiki Rd.; Roy and Mamie Youngman, 9708 N. Fotheringham; Walt and Marian Nelson, 9615 N. Wickiup Ct..
More gifts of $50 came from Charlotte Greene, 6704 E. Fourth, “in memory of my beloved husband, Frank Greene, who passed away last July of lung cancer”; Shelbon and Mary Heinzerling , 3323 E. Congress; Bernice Vaughan, 6525 N. Austin Rd., who wrote: “I am happy to donate to the Christmas Fund, knowing all of it is used to help.”
Other $50 gifts were from Dorothy Dickens, 6130 N. Lidgerwood; Ben and Eileen Fawcett, 1423 W. Ardmore Dr.; Ermina R. Swanberg, 53 E. Longfellow; and four anonymous donors.
The Human Resource Department of The Spokesman-Review gave $45. Giving $40 were Oliver J. Richard, 353 W. Nebraska; and Del and Yvonne Bodker, 1808 W. Courtland, “in loving memory of our grandson, Blaine, who passed on four years ago at age 12 of cancer.”
Elizabeth Schatz, 3009 W. Rosewood Ave., gave $32 in memory of Karen Schatz Dunning. Those contributing $30 were Eugene and Eloise Hartman, 3613 E. 21st; Ron and Connie Hamaker; and one anonymous donor.
Those donating $25 were Dan and Joyce Cantrell, 904 S. Edgerton; Jeannette E. Selbo, “in loving memory of my family who have passed on. They are still loved”; Earl and Betty Jo Devary, 6114 N. Best; Ellen Nelson, Spokane, with this note: “Thank you for making it possible to give to those in need.”
Also sending $25 gifts were Gwynn and Helen Miller, 9909 N. Glenwood Dr.;, Carlyne Franks, 210 E. Lincoln Rd.; the Roy Howerton family, 3016 N. Park Rd.: “Here is our bit of ‘every little bit helps.’ Merry Christmas.”
Mr. and Mrs. K.W. Throm, 301 S. Chestnut St., and three anonymous donors, including one who gave “so others may enjoy the magic of the holiday season, too.”
An anonymous person gave $20 in memory of John Devlin.
Those donating $10 were Lisa Stolz and family, 2624 N. Hogan, “in loving memory of Bryan Paternaude, who passed away in May of this year. He had a big heart and I know he would do the same. Thank you, Spokesman-Review for this Christmas Fund and Merry Christmas to all of you involved.” Mr. and Mrs. N.W. McLain, 1811 S. Perry, also gave $10 as did two anonymous donors.
Thomas DeRoche, 2618 E. 27th, gave $5 with this note: “It’s not much, but I know it will help. Merry Christmas to everyone working there.”