The late Paul Lydig, a Spokane contractor described as a man who enjoyed helping people in need, has generated a most generous gift of $2,000 for The Spokesman-Review Christmas Fund.
Jan Lydig donated the gift in her husband’s name “to continue his compassion for the less fortunate.”
That contribution helped bring Wednesday’s total to $17,837 for a grand total of $122,826.
That’s about the same amount the fund had collected by Dec. 11 last year. Although there still is $277,174 to raise before Christmas to meet the $400,000 goal, we continue to have faith it can be done.
But the challenge is scary.
There’s so much at stake - such as the laughter of a child opening a gift from Santa on Christmas morning. There’s nothing that creates a smile on an adult’s face faster than the sweet smile of a little one.
Children’s giggles are so pure - like the merriest of music.
Jan Lydig’s letter continued, “Yours is the one charity we feel secure giving to, knowing that every penny is used to make Christmas a happy time for others. Hope you reach your goal.”
That remark about every penny going for its intended use is repeated often by those contributing to the Christmas Fund.
It’s true. Nothing is withheld for expenses. The newspaper serves only as a conduit to collect the money. All of the money is turned over to the three agencies operating the Christmas Bureau to pay for toys and food vouchers for those who are down and out during the holidays.
Because the agencies - the Salvation Army, Catholic Charities and Volunteers of America - are non-profit, contributions are tax-deductible.
Your Christmas gifts pay for toys for each child up to 18 years old. That toy is the only present some children will receive. Your money also helps pay for food vouchers given to families to help them enjoy a more festive holiday meal.
It’s bare basics we’re talking about. Nothing frivolous. No bells, no whistles - except the toys, bought at bargain prices all yearlong, are as good as ones the children’s friends will receive. They may well be the very same, in fact.
There is no better way to spend your charitable dollar than through the Christmas Fund. Your contribution will be merged with all the other donations to create happiness for kids on Christmas morning, whose family will say an extra prayer of thanks for the special meal they’ll eat that day.
With more dollars comes more buying power.
As has been said here before, please examine your heart and your pocketbook and follow your sentiments.
Other contributions tallied Tuesday include the employees of Spokane Chrysler Plymouth Hyundai, 6818 E. Sprague, who gave $1,210.
“We have all been blessed over the past year and would like to pass some of those blessings on to others,” a letter read. “We would also like to challenge other new and used car dealership employees to either meet or beat our contribution.”
Hear that, car dealers? The gauntlet has been dropped.
Banner Furnace and Fuel, 122 N. Helena, gave $1,200.
Elaine Dishman, 2307 S. Forest Estates, donated $1,000 “in memory of my son, Jack David Dishman, who passed away in 1993, and also my husband, Jack Wilton Dishman, who passed away in 1994. I hope this will help those in need during this holiday season.”
Gifts of $500 came from Deb and Steve Mumm, 8707 N. Kensington Drive; and giving in loving memory were the parents of of Janet, Dennis and Denice. The parents wrote, “Thank you so much, for this is the best memorial, as Christmas is for children.”
The Spokane Collegiate Football Officials Group also donated $500 “for those who have fallen on hard times in our local community. This group of men is committed to excellence both on the football field and off, and we would never be accused of ‘holding’ back or ‘interfering’ with such a fantastic cause.”
There were also two anonymous donations of $500, one “to honor friends who took such good care of me during my recent illness. They gave me shelter for a week when my power was out.”
Fred and Norrine Potts, 14323 E. Alki, gave $450. The Spokane Ex-
Prisoners of War gave $300, saying it was from “those of us who have known hunger, pain and suffering. our contribution, may (others’) hunger, pain and suffering be lessened,” signed by George S. Vasil, commander. E.B. Humes, 1207 E. Lyons, also donated $300.
Gifts of $250 came from G.A. Garske, 2126 W. Glass; the International Footprint Association, Spokane Falls Chapter, 4234 E. Carlisle; and one anonymous donor.
Dennis Kelsh, 700 W. Seventh, donated $200 “to help those in need of a boost this holiday season.
“After a three-year absence from Spokane, I tend to notice things about this community that I perhaps took for granted in my previous 30-year residence. This annual appeal is surely one of the best things that happens here, reflecting the generous spirits of corporations and individuals and the sense of community that is endemic to Spokane,” Kelsh said.
Jack Redinger, 12402 N. Division, also gave $200, as did Mr. and Mrs. Al Schaeffer, 11605 N. Whitehouse; Dann Simpson, Colville, who gave in his children’s names, Mark, Christianne, Teri and Patricia; Andrea Balazs and Keegan Shorey; and an anonymous donor.
Giving $175 was Gail Burchett, 5928 N. Post, “in loving memory of Tim, from Mom, Dad, Karen and Rod,” and one anonymous donor.
Eric and Beth Calkins, 452 W. 25th, gave $150; an anonymous donor gave $125. Roger’s Foto Art, 3326 E. 28th, gave $110.
Gifts of $100 came from Mr. and Mrs. F. N. McKinley, Cheney; Cliff and Judie Hoekema, 4727 N. Elgin; the Crabtrees, 9805 N. Ridgecrest Drive; Mr. and Mrs. Robert Crawford, 1612 W. Gordon; Ron and Cheryl Vaughan, 14827 N. Lynnwood Drive; Julie and Mark Nevdahl, 1228 E. Brierwood; Felix E. Mutschler, Cheney; Judith Laddon and Lawrence Shooks, 4327 S. Perry; the Bergs, 4226 S. Martin; Ronald and Bernadine McClellan, 8303 N. Standard; Eileen Rudd, Veradale, “in memory of Wally Rudd who worked many years at the Christmas Bureau.”
Gladys Lynch, Colfax, gave $100, as did Mrs. H. Haberman, 233 E. Rockwood Blvd; the Santantonios, 1715 N. West Point Road; Arnold Meyer, Greenacres; Pauline Hacker, 1224 W. Riverside; Mr. and Mrs. Paul K. Flynn, 1222 W. 17th; Rex and Adeline Price, 6310 E. Sixth; Dr. and Mrs. Hugh W. Johnston, 4532 N. Royal Court.