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  • Writer's pictureThe Eagle

Angels Fly High This Christmas

By Lily Lovette and Oliver Maul--Eagle Staff Writers

One of the batches of Angel Tree presents in McGeorge's room. (Photo by Lily Lovette)

Tis’ the season for putting gifts under the tree and watching little faces light up with joy, but what about senior citizens? The Franklin County High School National Honor Society has got them covered. Their annual Angel Tree Project will once again bring holiday happiness to residents at the Rocky Mount Health and Rehab Center.

A few of the packed presents getting ready to be delivered. (Photo by Lily Lovette)

The Angel Tree Project has been a community holiday project since 2008 and many people and organizations throughout the county have participated. Each year, NHS encourages students, teachers, and classes to “adopt” one of the senior residents to be their “angel.” Alicia McGeorge, one of the NHS sponsors said, “Every year we have been able to sponsor more and more angels. This year we are sponsoring 80 individuals.”

Each resident was asked to put a few things on a Christmas list. “Each resident has requested certain gifts they would like to have. Usually they are simple things - lotion, sweatpants or sweatshirts, and maybe some candy,” Tammy Knick, an English teacher, stated. Bath products were a popular request from the residents this year.

Mrs.McGeorge's makeshift Santa sack filled with gifts. (Photo by Lily Lovette)

The NHS members have also encouraged sponsors to include a letter for their angel - a small note wishing the residents a happy holiday. “I think the handmade cards will put a nice finishing touch on all the gifts,” McGeorge exclaimed.

McGeorge personally delivers the presents to the center. With the growing numbers of angels, it usually takes her about three trips to deliver all of the gifts. She said, “I feel like Santa Claus pulling in the parking lot with all the gifts! Sometimes there are residents around the lobby while I'm unloading them and they are excited to see everything coming in.”

The Holidays can be lonely for those whose family are not able to visit them, but for more than a decade, the Angel Tree project has been showing these people that they are remembered and cared for. This project shows any gift can go a long way.

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