ABC11 Together highlights the strength of the human spirit, good deeds, community needs, and how our viewers can help
SANFORD, N.C. (WTVD) -- Nothing could stop Jim Annis from making this Christmas special. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the 81-year-old to work harder as there's more of a need this year.
"I've got to make some more toys right quick. The last three weeks I've been very busy making toys from scratch," said Annis.
The veteran spends much of the year tucked away in his garage of a workshop building a variety of wooden toys by the hundreds. He donates them to the Lee County Salvation Army for kids who likely won't have other gifts to open Christmas morning. Jim remembers that feeling.
"My dad...he worked every day. He had a job but didn't make a lot of money. When you have five or six kids, it's hard to have a good Christmas for everybody," said Annis.
Annis credits high school wood shop class for teaching him this valuable skill as he was born with a hearing disability.
"The principal called me in one day and said, 'Jim, we are going to give you a trade. That way, when you get out of school, you'll have a trade to make a living,'" said Annis.
Wooden scraps fill the nooks and crannies inside his workshop. As long as there's kids who need toys to open Christmas morning, he could always use more.
"I don't get paid money for this. I get paid better than money. When I give the child the toy, the smile on their faces and eyes lighting up, it hits me right here," said Annis touching his heart.
If you would like to donate, Mr. Annis would take your call at +1 (919) 478-6246.