Marines deliver toys, smiles to community surrounding Yokota
AKIRUNO CITY - The holidays are a time of enjoying time with family and friends and most importantly spreading kindness and goodwill to all.
At Yokota Air Base, Japan, a group of Marines extended their goodwill by delivering toys to children at the Ajiro orphanage in Akiruno City, Tokyo, on Dec. 14 for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program.
Every year, October through December, Marines collect new, unwrapped toys to be given as gifts to underprivileged children through the Toys for Tots program. This year at Yokota, approximately 1500 toys have been collected to give to communities throughout Japan.
"It was a great feeling to see how excited the kids got when they received new toys. Giving back to the community makes me proud to be a Marine," said Sgt. Jeremiah Crane, U.S. Forces, Japan.
Toys for Tots began in 1947 when retired U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Maj. Bill Hendricks, and a group of Marine reservists in Los Angeles collected and distributed 5,000 toys to needy children.
For more than six decades, Toys for Tots has delivered a message of hope to less fortunate children through the gift of new toys, games, and sports equipment during the holiday season. Gifts offer children hope, recognition and a positive memory they can cherish for a lifetime.
"It was really great to see how happy the kids were when they got new toys," said Corp. Crystal Greene, American Forces Network. "Events like this remind me why I joined the Marines... I joined to help people."