Outpouring of generosity pays off in happy hearts for GIs' kids


December 25, 2019

Paetyn Gardner rejoices as she opens a Christmas gift containing a Barbi doll during the finale of the first Operation Happy Hearts program, which provided gifts for children of deployed military personnel in Sweet Home, which was held Friday, Dec. 20. Paetyn and four other local children were recipients of gifts provided by local donors.

Christmas spirit reigned Friday afternoon, Dec. 20, in the Sweet Home School District Board Room.

It was the culmination of the inaugural Operation Happy Hearts, an effort to provide gifts for children who have parents serving in the military overseas during the holidays.

Five children, from two local families, received gifts in the effort organized by Trisha Van Eck, Student Services secretary for the district.

"The turnout was a lot more than I had expected," said Van Eck. "Our community was so gracious and generous."

Three of the five recipients were Matt Levesque, 17, Ethan Dunaway...

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