|The Bowie Blade - December 24, 2002
The U.S. Marine
Corps Reserve has been sending messages of hope to needy children for 55
years. Whether its a fire truck, a doll, a football, a simple toy ... most
children take these things for granted., but to a needy child, a toy is a
message of hope. Since 1947, the theme remains the same.
Every child deserves a little Christmas.
That first year, Maj. Bill Hendricks, with the support of members of his
Los Angeles Marine Corps Reserve unit, collected and distributed 5,000 toys
to needy children. Hendrick's program was so successful that in 1948, the
Marine Corps adopted it and expanded it nationwide as the Marine Corps
Reserve Toys for Tots program. In the intervening years, Marines have
conducted 54 successful campaigns, collecting and distributing over
250,000,000 toys nationally.