Well, Thanksgiving week is here and once again, it is time for all of us to slow down and give thanks for the blessings that we’ve received.  What are you thankful for?  Is it the newly paved Liberty Avenue or the new bridgework underway?  Or maybe it’s the continued improvements that the Romp family makes to their property for us all to have some family fun.  Is it the amazing Main Street Beach work or our incredible Ritter Public Library?  I know that I’m thankful for the extra six years that the doctors gave my dad so we could make more memories together.  I’m thankful for the years of friendship that I had with Henry Kishman and wish I had many more years with him.  I’m thankful for the local citizens who put their name on a ballot to offer their help in making Vermilion better.   I’m especially thankful for my loving family who always seem to remind me of my blessings when I manage to forget them. Of course, each year I’m thankful for the amazing people in our community who offer their help with Operation Christmas Joy.   

                The Lions Club has once again offered to help us move food in and out, the outstanding students in Vermilion Schools have already conducted fundraisers for us at the direction of Monroe Naill, Vermilion’s Dollar General has offered us discounts on food and Brad Butler with Toys-for-Tots has promised to provide us some much needed toys.  Vermilion Schools Superintendent Phil Pempin has graciously offered the field house for our main base of operations, and I have talked with individual volunteers who are looking to provide the manual labor and strong backs needed to move all of the food out.

                Vermilion’s Salvation Army indicates that some of our neighbors need a helping hand to get through their struggles again this year. Operation Christmas Joy is asking for your help by making financial donations to help us buy food and gifts for our neighbors. Donations can be sent to Operation Christmas Joy, c/o Brad Schwab, 4546 Liberty Ave, Vermilion OH 44089.  Food sorting and packing will take place Thursday, Dec. 16 from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. at the Vermilion Schools Field House. Delivery is Saturday Dec. 18 from 9 a.m. – 12 noon from the Field House as well.

                As Charles Dickens put it- “No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.”