Reservists bring Christmas magic to students with special needs

  • Published
  • 419th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah – Reservists in the wing’s 67th Aerial Port Squadron are once again making Christmas dreams come true by bringing a little North Pole magic to Ogden, Utah.

Airmen decked in elf attire came bearing toys, school supplies, and warm-weather clothing to students with special needs at Mound Fort Junior High. Deliveries were tailored to the wish lists of each boy and girl.

Serving for the second year as lead “elf,” Senior Airman Amy Barnes said the project started in August, as members of the 67th APS began raising funds for the children.

“Fundraising was more challenging this year due to COVID, along with arranging how we’re going to deliver the gifts safely to the kids,” Barnes said. “But we were able to collect clothes, shoes, and toys for everyone in the classroom, as well as gifts for the teacher and classroom aides.”

Squadron members were intent on keeping this holiday tradition alive, even with the changes brought on by the pandemic. And, as in years past, Santa Claus made a special appearance to remind the children that they’re loved.

“This is such a great way to give back to our community, especially this group of kids that we’ve come to know throughout the years,” Barnes said. “They’ve had a hard year of trying to adapt to so much change, just like the rest of us, so it’s great to be able to carry on this tradition.”