Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, coloring books and Transformers were among the gifts donated through the senator’s office this year

PHILADELPHIA, PA, December 18, 2017 – State Sen. Christine M. Tartaglione hosted U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Marc Zayas today to present the coordinator of the 2017 Philadelphia Toys for Tots program with a treasure trove of gifts donated through the senator’s Bridge Street office as part of the annual toy drive.


The senator’s generous constituents gave a variety of fun, creative and educational items including Mickey Mouse and Winnie the Pooh plush dolls, astronaut-theme coloring books, alphabet magnets, superhero sticker books, a Play-Doh set and schoolbook backpacks. The Marines will distribute the donated items to families in need throughout the Philadelphia area.

“Each year the toy drive keeps getting better and better,” Sen. Tartaglione said. “The Marines hit a pinnacle one year, then they exceed it the next year. I want to thank them for taking the initiative and making sure that millions of children get toys for Christmas.”

U.S. Marine Corps Reserves Major Bill Hendricks created the Toys for Tots program in 1947 when he led a group of Los Angeles-based reservists who collected and distributed 5,000 toys to children in need. The idea originated with Major Hendricks’ wife Diane when she handcrafted a Raggedy Ann doll and asked her husband to find an organization that would give it to a needy child. Finding no such organization, Diane urged Major Hendricks to start one.

Major Hendricks was so successful that year, the Marine Corps adopted the project in 1948 and expanded it into an annual nationwide campaign. Within the past year, the program has delivered 18 million toys to 7 million children representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

Visit ToysForTots.org for more information and to donate to the Toys for Tots program.

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact William Kenny at 215-533-0440 or email at William.Kenny@pasenate.com.