Demand for toys exceeds expectation of Toys for Tots

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 19, 2004

More than 3,000 underprivileged children – nearly double the number originally anticipated – will wake up Christmas Day to plenty of holiday gifts, thanks to Suffolk Toys for Tots.

&uot;It’s wonderful,&uot; said Bill Ashley, retiring chairman of the program. &uot;We have plenty of toys to give away.&uot;

The program, sponsored by the South Hampton Roads Association of Financial Advisors, initially was expected to serve about 1,600 children this year, Ashley said.

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The generosity of dozens of individuals, organizations and businesses to the Suffolk Cheer Fund, the Suffolk’s News-Herald’s annual holiday fundraising campaign, are vital to Toys for Tots, he said.

Thus far, contributions to the Cheer Fund – all of which are earmarked for Toys for Tots – total $16,097.50, said Frank Rawls, chairman of the fund drive.

&uot;We appreciate the generosity of people in the Suffolk community,&uot; said Andy Prutsok, publisher of the News-Herald. &uot;None of this could be done without you.

&uot;Every contribution – whether it’s a few pennies a child finds under the sofa or a check from the city’s largest company – is equally meaningful in our quest to ensure that every child in Suffolk has a memorable holiday. That is something no child should ever be denied.&uot;