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News > Annual Toys for Tots kicks off holiday season around Yokota AB
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Annual Toys for Tots kicks off holiday season around Yokota AB
U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Jeremiah Crane, right, U.S. Forces, Japan, explains how to use a horse toy to children at Ajiro orphanage in Akiruno city, Tokyo, Dec. 14, 2012 during the annual USMC Reserve Toys for Tots drive. In 1947, a group of U.S. Marine Reservists collected and distributed 5,000 toys to children in need on Christmas Eve in the Los Angeles area. The USMC has distributed more than 300 million toys to 150 million children. (U.S. Air Force photo/Osakabe Yasuo)
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Annual Toys for Tots kicks off holiday season around Yokota AB

Posted 12/17/2012   Updated 12/17/2012 Email story   Print story


by Osakabe Yasuo
374th Airlift Wing public affairs

12/17/2012 - AKIRUNO CITY, Japan  -- 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."

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