OUR VIEW: Empty Stocking helped needy during holiday

We are overwhelmed by the generosity of our friends and neighbors and business associates in West Texas. This was the 23rd year of the Empty Stocking Fund, which is a joint effort by the Odessa Salvation Army and the Odessa American to raise funds to help needy families during Christmas time.

Thanks to your generous support there are hundreds of families in Odessa who had a merrier Christmas with food and gifts.

This year’s goal was $100,000. Just a week or so before the end of the drive we were biting our nails wondering if we would get anywhere near that number.

Why did we worry? We know about your generosity and how West Texans look out for each other. Especially the neediest of those among us.

A last-minute anonymous donation pushed the Empty Stocking Fund to $96,811, just a wee bit shy of the $100,000 goal for 2017.

That is amazing. Our economy is recovering and your generous funds showed that with that recovery comes heartfelt donations that help old and young.

So many anonymous givers (19 in all totaling $34,719) helped out the Salvation Army this holiday. Many, many others gave in the names of their loved ones. What a wonderful way to honor a family member!

We thank all of you who gave to this important cause. Here’s a listing of those who gave:

  • The Wood Family Foundation, C.V. or Mala Ramanathan, The Weaver family, Timothy and Donna George, Gary and Linda Martin, Mary Griffin (El Ave. Apartments), Kathryn Griffin, Fred Nelle Crusader Sunday School, Jim and Donna Jordan, Bill and Sharon Lipham, Elizabeth Somers, Fred and Carole Nelle, Paul Jr. and Martha Crump, the “I Love Hats Ladies,” Susan Winn, SF and Helen Henderson, Bernhard T.W. and Jane Sedate, William and Ordelle Watts, Tommy and Barbara Henderson, Mark A. and Laura Gardner, Angus Measurement Services LP, Engineered Pipeline Systems, Inc., the Odessa American, Denvee D. Shoup, Friendship Chapter Order of the Eastern Star, Mr. and Mrs. Adalberto Calderon, Jane Hext, Keith and Janis Dunlap, Al Tochterman, D & B Oil Inc., Billie A. Morgan, Cathy M. Figert, Roger B. Corzine, James and Cristela Jerkins, Kingston Ave Baptist Church – Ruth Sunday School Class, Jackie Alexander, Richard R. Rubalcaba, Dennis and Judy Williams, Wayne Williams, Joyce Leffingwell, Gary and Viki Haner, Robert and Sheri Murray, Rush and Marlyn Mortimer, Thomas and Vicki Smith, Napa Auto Parts, Fred Barron, Mahlan LeBlanc, Price Har, Lane Celander and Sammy Rice, Kyle S. Scarborough, Steve Brannan, Dickson Process Systems, Daniel Baumstimler, Jesse and Dolores Castelo, Odessa Pumps, Ludie and Eben Warner and Marilyn Chitwood.