Holiday Acceptance - Two Teenagers Gather A Thousand Christmas Gifts

Real Estate Agent with Gentry Realty

Guaymas Boy Scouts


A thousand miles. A thousand gifts. A thousand smiles.

It began in earnest a few months ago. My son made contact, through the boy scouts, with the Mesa Rotary club. For the past quarter century they've been bringing Christmas to orphanages in Guaymas, Mexico.

When he asked what he could do to help- they told him to gather presents... as many as he could.

Guaymas BalloonsWith the help of his friend, Tanner,  they made a door-to-door plea within a square mile of our residence.

Together they managed to collect over a thousand gifts. Members of the Rotary club collected additional toys and candy.

These items were loaded into the planes of several volunteers. They came from Arizona and nearby states... each offering time and resources to bring Christmas to those with challenges.

We drove down to Guaymas and were quite overwhelmed by what we saw. There are four schools for children with special needs... each one has over 200 students.

Chandler and Tanner had managed to gather enough toys for everyone.

Guaymas Kids

The event began with balloons... then Santa arrived. The students lined up for toys... one side for boys- the other for girls.

Each student was given a voucher good for one present.

Chandler and Tanner would hold up several bags and ask which one they wanted most.

One girl was confused by this. When she was asked again "which one would you like?" - she said, "It's not for me... it's for my teacher."

It was just one of many touching moments. She had decided to forgo her own gift for someone important. Is not this the spirit of the occasion?

The act of giving trumping that of receiving?

Two teens asked their neighbors for help... and the neighbors came through. They helped these boys take part in a glorious holiday that we'll never forget.

Here are some more pictures of the event:

Santa arrives

Santa makes his entrance... the crowd goes wild.



At the doorway to one classroom was this sign, which, roughly translated, teaches this great lesson:

"The disabled have the capacity to be extraordinarily capable."


waiting for presents


Each child waited patiently for his and her turn to pick out a present.

Boys chose from a variety of items such as soccer balls, toy cars and trucks. The girls were excited about the dolls, stuffed animals and princess accessories.

The items that seemed to be most in demand were coloring books and crayons. They enjoyed creating some instantaneous artwork.

It was a humbling experience to see that the gifts that were so freely given by our neighbors were very well received. It's a shame they couldn't see the reaction as each child received a gift.


Many thanks go to the good people of the Mesa Arizona Downtown Rotary club, the generous contributors of Friendly Cove, Forest Knoll and the Harris Park neighborhoods as well as the pilots and volunteers at Falcon Field and Stellar Air Park. They all made it possible for the Boy Scouts to join the fine volunteers in Guaymas- all the teachers as well as the Mayor and members of DIF Guaymas- the organization that coordinated local events.


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Comments 25 New Comment

Mike Jones
Mike Jones NMLS 223495


Together they managed to collect over a thousand gifts.  That's a Christmas miracle!

Mike in Tucson

December 21, 2008 07:40 AM
Tim Ludemann
Sand Castle Realty Group, Inc.

Chuck - Congrats to you for raise such a special son....that is what the holiday season is all about...what an inspiration.

December 22, 2008 05:28 PM
Teresa Berry

Chuck - now that's the best holiday story I've heard this season and a lifelong memory for your son and tanner to have helped make the season brighter for so many. i'm think'in that has to make the community and dad feel pretty darn good too!  

December 23, 2008 07:39 AM
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Real Estate Services You can Trust!
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"

Chuck, Sounds like you have an amazing son.  You must be very proud of him.  What a wonderful and inspiring story.  Happy Holidays to you and your family.

December 23, 2008 06:05 PM
Sharon Tara
New Hampshire Home Stager
Sharon Tara Transformations

You have obviously done a very good job raising that boy of yours!  You are to be given some credit too.  I'm sure you are very proud.  This is an inspiring story.

December 29, 2008 10:04 AM

Chuck Willman

Realtor - Arizona - 480.292.0600
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