“Helping Santa 2018” underway in Franklin County

RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. – As Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday approach, first responders in Russellville are asking the public to keep them in mind. They are providing some helping hands for Old Saint Nick this year.

The gift may just be a baby doll or plastic car, but it could mean the world to a child on Christmas morning.

“To be a fireman, that’s what you are called to do; is to try and help and help those that are less fortunate,” explained Russellville Fire Captain Randy Seal.

Captain Seal has spent twenty years responding to calls for help. Which led him to start the “Helping Santa” project.

Capt. Randy Seal

“We see it on several different levels. You get called to these people's houses and stuff, and you most certainly see the need. There’s always a need,” said Seal.

Now in its 10th year, Captain Seal says they help between three and five hundred children during the holidays. And as big of an impact as the program has had on children and families, he believes it’s the first responders who are touched the most.

“It humbles them a little bit more,” Seal stated. “It gives them a sense of pride that they can help in another way outside of what they do day-to-day.”

Simply put, Captain Seal said no child should be left without presents to open on Christmas morning.

Toys and clothing for ages newborn to 15 can be dropped off at locations through-out Russellville until December 17th. Monetary donations are also being accepted at any city of Russellville office to purchase items not donated.

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