Claremore Daily Progress

December 19, 2013

Share the Spirit: Funds still needed to reach $24,000 goal

Rebecca Hattaway
Staff Reporter

CLAREMORE —

(Editor’s Note: The names have been changed, but the story is real.)
 
The list of contributors to this year’s Share the Spirit fundraising campaign is growing longer by the day. 
That’s good news for people like Steve, 59, who for nine years made a good living as a salesman.
That all changed in May 2012, when, due to his wife being diagnosed with lung cancer, Steve lost his job.  He had applied for leave through the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) through his job, but was denied. 
Since then, Steve has been in search of a job, filling out more applications than he can count. 
Steve and his wife have been surviving on unemployment benefits, but those have now run out.
“When I spoke to Steve, he told me, ‘We fell into some hard times. You see it, you hear about it, but until you experience it, you just don’t understand it,’” said Grace Crossley with the Department of Human Services.
Steve is still frantically looking for work and trying to better the situation for both him and his wife. 
Thanks to our readers’ support of Share the Spirit, the couple won’t have to worry about where Christmas dinner will come from.
Hundreds of food baskets will be distributed today to individuals and families throughout the county.
But donations are still needed to meet the $24,000 goal. The current total is $16,145.
Please consider how you can give to Share the Spirit and help your neighbors in need. 
They are not all on welfare; many, like Steve and his wife, have simply fallen on hard times.
Tax-deductible donations can be made to Share the Spirit, P.O. Box 248, Claremore, OK 74018, or left at the Claremore Progress business office from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. 
Recent contributors include Rogers County Oowala Group, Carleen Mitchell, Irene I. Ward and Dana M. Shouse, Nora Egleston and Sharon Kay Egleston, William C. and Lois J. Larkin, Betty J. Jensen, Kendall and Cheryl L. Dorsey, Phyllis Hess in honor of Mickey Perry, Frank and Barbara Pregler, Froman Propane Co., Inc.,and Froman Oil Co., Inc.