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MVH Employees Brighten Christmas for Mon Valley Children

MVH Employees Brighten Christmas for Mon Valley Children photo

Monongahela Valley Hospital's Toys for Tots Program Coordinators Doug Prentice and John Bogdan pose with Mon Valley Leathernecks Toys for Tots Program Coordinator Wally Fronzaglio and some of the toys assembled by MVH management. Fronzaglio has been the local Toys For Tots coordinator for 26 years and MVH leaders have held the annual Santa's workshop style event for the last seven.

MVH Employees Brighten Christmas for Mon Valley Children photo

Monongahela Valley Hospital leaders have been assembling toys in a Santa's workshop-style gathering every year for the last seven years and donating them to the local Toys For Tots Program to help children in the Mon Valley. Shown are Trina Curcio, director of care and quality management for Vale-U-Health; Danielle Soles, RN; Patty Fife, Radiology supervisor; and John Bogdan, RN, BSN, nurse manager of the Behavioral Health and EEG departments.
(November 25, 2014 - Carroll Township, Pa.)

This Christmas will be much brighter for many children in the Mon Valley, thanks to the generosity of Monongahela Valley Hospital's staff.

MVH employees in every department have collected new, unwrapped gifts for the mid-Mon Valley Toys for Tots program since it began in 1986, and the collection boxes throughout the hospital campus are filling up.

In addition, hospital leaders have been assembling toys in a Santa's workshop-style gathering every year for the last seven years, according to MVH Toys for Tots Coordinators John Bogdan, RN, BSN, nurse manager of the Behavioral Health and EEG Departments, and Doug Prentice, Storeroom manager.

"I know our staff members look forward to the toy assembly and toy drive because they know how important it is to help children from the communities we serve every day at MVH," said Bogdan.

Toys for Tots Program Coordinator Wally Fronzaglio, of Donora, attended to witness this year's recent toy assembly held in the hospital's Anthony M. Lombardi Education Conference Center.

Fronzaglio then accepted the assembled toys afterwards on behalf of the Mon Valley Leathernecks, a group of more than 160 former Marines of all ages that "does all the legwork" for the local Toys for Tots Program. The Leathernecks formed in 1986 to run a local collection program.

Fronzaglio said he is overjoyed with the hospital's participation and said it really makes a difference for the area's children.

He said that the hospital staff really "stepped up" last year to make sure the children all had gifts because in 2012 the program did not have enough toys for everyone.

"Plus, last year, three days before Christmas, a storm flooded the basement of the Mon Valley Salvation Army, ruining more than $3,000 worth of their toy donations," he said. "We had enough - three truckloads in fact -- that we were able to replace the toys they lost and make the kids all happy. It could have been a terrible day but we had enough, thanks to generous people like you."

Fronzaglio said the Leathernecks also accept cash donations and then purchase additional new toys from stores in the Mon Valley, which he says is an extra little boost to the local economy.

Anyone can send a check made payable to "Toys for Tots" to Wally Fronzaglio/Toys for Tots, 204 Brokaw Ave., Donora, PA 15033, before Dec. 15. Checks received after that date will be used for the 2015 drive.

For more information on the local program, contact Coordinator Wally Fronzaglio after 5 p.m. at 724-379-8888.

The Toys for Tots Program began in the late 1940s in Los Angeles, Ca., by Marine Reservists. Walt Disney helped by designing the group's train car logo and other celebrities like Bob Hope and John Wayne also helped during the organization's formative years.

Last year nationwide, Toys for Tots received $4 million and nearly 350,000 toys to help spread holiday cheer to millions of children in the United States. For more information on the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program, visit www.toysfortots.org.

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