Veteran Organization Gets Toys To Needy Vet Families This Christmas

Christmas isn't the easiest of time for military families or for returning veterans. When work is scarce, gifts and Santa Claus can get pushed down the priority list. Luckily the Lone Star Veteran Association has that base covered for many veteran families this holiday season. But they also want you to remember those who are still serving overseas.

Bryan Escobedo is the Lone Star Veteran Associations designated Santa Claus this year — or more like replacement Santa because the guy who normally does the LSVA toy drive was called away.

“So when I found out I was taking over this, I was ecstatic. I was like, 'Yes, I get to play Santa Claus!'”

Every toy was donated by supporters of the LSVA and Houston companies like Mustang Engineering who hire veterans.

“They gave us two U-haul trucks filled from the back to the front from top to bottom and then on top of that they gave us 30 bicycles.”

Escobedo has a list of 45 veteran families in the Greater Houston are who will receive these toys tomorrow. It’s the third year they’ve done the toy drive, but it’s the first year they’ve had more toys than families — which he says is a good problem to have.

“We have such an excess of toys that I’m having to find a whole new great deal of families so I’m predicting about 60 plus families. This epitomizes the Holiday spirit. ”

The one thing Escobedo would ask for this holiday season though is care packages for our troops. Having served abroad as a marine he knows just how important they are.

“When you get one of these packages from back home, just a card with a kind word in it or letters from children back home it recharges your battery and you’re able to keep going. It’s absolutely essential for the mental wellness of the soldiers and Marines out there fighting.”

Bio photo of Edel Howlin

Edel Howlin

Producer, Houston Matters

Edel is a producer on Houston Matters and reporter for PBS’s Newshour Weekend...