WASHINGTON (AP) – Tugging a huge red sack stuffed with toys, Michelle Obama thanked military families for inspiring her as first lady as she delivered about 900 gifts Tuesday from White House employees to the Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots campaign.
“Military families are what inspires my work,” Mrs. Obama said at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling.
She along with Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, started the Joining Forces campaign in 2011 to honor and support military families.
Mrs. Obama said the annual toy drive_ which was started by a Marine reservist and his wife_ is just one example of how military families go the extra mile to serve their communities and country. The first lady said military families, who face hardships, struggles and constant deployment, are always first to step up and volunteer.
“Somehow you’re always the ones who find the extra hours in the day to give back, above and beyond what life has thrown your way anyway,” she said.
Mrs. Obama wished volunteers and service members at the military base “Happy Holidays” as she helped sort unwrapped toys into bins marked for boy and girls by different age groups.
She noted that most toy drives are often short on gifts for older children.
“A lot of times when we do the shopping we like to reach for the cute little bear or the little doll, but the truth is that they also need gifts for older kids as well,” she said.
For children ages 11 to 14, she suggested books, games, backpacks and clothes “because if your teens are like mine, they want some clothes, something cute to wear.”
Mrs. Obama is the mother of daughters Malia, 14, and Sasha, 11.
Retired Marine Lt. Gen. Pete Osman, president and CEO of Toys for Tots, said the demand for gifts seems to go up every season, especially in the Northeast after this year’s “curveball” Superstorm Sandy.
Osman thanked the first lady for being the program’s “No. 1 volunteer” since she has enlisted public support and rolled up her sleeves to help in each of her four years in the White House.
“When Michelle Obama leads, the American people follow,” he said.
Presents collected from the White House toy drive included school supplies, books and toys by K’NEX Brands. President Barack Obama picked up the toys last month when he visited a suburban Philadelphia toy factory as part of his campaign to get the public to pressure Congress to act to prevent the so-called “fiscal cliff.”
Toys for Tots:
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- Affordable small home makeovers for Mother's Day
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food
- 5 spring cleaning spots everyone forgets
- 5 reasons to look forward to watching the D-backs this season
- Common virus attributed to spike in head and neck cancers
- 5 signs it’s time to end your timeshare ownership
- 3 most overlooked ways to keep your home healthy
- 6 ways the air in your home could be making you sick
- CrossFit dangers: 5 common injuries and how to deal with them
- Today's radiation treatments offer better success, fewer side effects
- Tips to make watching TV on the patio even better
- What really happens when you donate to a community college?
- Sun and skin cancer: Separating fact from fiction
- 5 critical lifestyle changes for a healthy colon
- What you need to know about Alzheimer's disease in Arizona
- Spring clean your windows like a pro with these 8 tips
- 7 films that should have won best-picture Oscars
- New plumbing technology saves money and improves your home
- Survey shows Arizona CFOs optimistic about 2016
- How chronic pain can affect your love life