• One of the rooms at the Fort Leavenworth, Kan., Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers office fills with wrapped gifts Dec. 19. Gifts given through the Angel Tree will go to 200 children of local service members and 30 children in foster care with KVC Health Systems.

    Fort Leavenworth community pitches in for local charities

    One of the rooms at the Fort Leavenworth, Kan., Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers office fills with wrapped gifts Dec. 19. Gifts given through the Angel Tree will go to 200 children of local service members and 30 children in foster care with...

  • Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers President Sgt. Jessica Alexander ties several packages together, intended for a child whose holiday requests were posted on the BOSS Angel Tree, Dec. 19 at the Fort Leavenworth, Kan., BOSS office in the old U.S. Disciplinary Barracks. Alexander said gifts given through the Angel Tree will go to 200 children of service members and 30 children in foster care with KVC Health Systems.

    Fort Leavenworth community pitches in for local charities

    Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers President Sgt. Jessica Alexander ties several packages together, intended for a child whose holiday requests were posted on the BOSS Angel Tree, Dec. 19 at the Fort Leavenworth, Kan., BOSS office in the old U.S...

  • Five-year-old Trina Waugh tries on Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo's service cap Dec. 16 at Eisenhower Elementary School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan. Perdomo, area Toys for Tots coordinator, was at the school picking up a box of donated toys.

    Fort Leavenworth community pitches in for local charities

    Five-year-old Trina Waugh tries on Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo's service cap Dec. 16 at Eisenhower Elementary School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan. Perdomo, area Toys for Tots coordinator, was at the school picking up a box of donated toys.

  • Gunnery Sgt. William DeVlaminck and Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo carry Toys for Tots donations to their van Dec. 16 at Eisenhower Elementary School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan. The Marines picked up donations at the three post elementary schools, the Post Exchange, the Military Corrections Complex, and other on-post, and off-post, locations during the annual toy drive. More than 1,500 toys were collected, and will be distributed through the Leavenworth Assistance Center.

    Fort Leavenworth community pitches in for local charities

    Gunnery Sgt. William DeVlaminck and Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo carry Toys for Tots donations to their van Dec. 16 at Eisenhower Elementary School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan. The Marines picked up donations at the three post elementary schools, the Post...

  • Marine Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo and Gunnery Sgt. William DeVlaminck load a van with Toys for Tots donations Dec. 16 at Eisenhower Elementary School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

    Fort Leavenworth community pitches in for local charities

    Marine Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo and Gunnery Sgt. William DeVlaminck load a van with Toys for Tots donations Dec. 16 at Eisenhower Elementary School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

FORT LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (Dec. 22, 2011) -- Far from Santa's workshop at the North Pole, Sgt. Jessica Alexander wrapped hundreds of gifts for needy military children on Fort Leavenworth.

This year, Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers helped Santa coordinate presents for 200 children, each receiving three or four presents. The "nice" list of needy children was submitted to BOSS President Alexander and fulfilled using the Angel Tree at the Post Exchange. Patrons were able to choose a tag with the age, gender and wish of the child. There were about 200 children from military families and 35 from KVC, the state agency for foster care and social welfare services across Kansas.

Some patrons chose unwrapped toys, others just gave cash. By Dec. 19, Alexander filled two office rooms with wrapped presents.

"A retired Navy officer donated about $300 to buy gifts for a sick child," she said. "I talked to him in person and he wanted to make sure that sick kid got a nice Christmas this year."

The Fort Leavenworth Marine contingent was responsible for the local U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program. Staff Sgt. Jose Perdomo said, as of Dec. 20, 371 children have already received gifts. The toys were distributed through the off-post Leavenworth Assistance Center, which serves needy families throughout the area.

Each of the 371 children received four gifts -- one large, one medium and two small gifts.

Perdomo said the schools on post were especially supportive of the toy drive, with each school filling at least two or three boxes with toys. The box at the PX was also filled several times, Perdomo said.
Off post, the Toys for Tots boxes were filling throughout Leavenworth, too.

"The Citizens Bank on South Fourth Street, they're one of our biggest donors," Perdomo said. "Those ladies love shopping for us."

Cubic Corporation, a defense contractor in downtown Leavenworth, was another large toy donor. Perdomo also said the motorcycle clubs around the community got together and had a toy drive to support the children. He said despite economic difficulties, people have still been willing to step up and give toys to needy children.

"Considering the economy, we're definitely trying to pitch it out there, and still trying to get the same awareness and support, if not better," he said.

Page last updated Thu December 22nd, 2011 at 12:37