Healing sadness one toy at a time

The Hermits Peak Calf Canyon fire has displaced thousands of New Mexicans, many of whom are staying in shelters, hotels or with friends and family. Some families have lost everything, while others are waiting to see if their homes are still standing when evacuation orders are lifted. On Tuesday, the Marines dropped off a huge donation to officers in northern New Mexico as part of Toys for Tots. The mission is to help bring smiles back to children who had to leave their homes because of the forest fire. About 500 toys were donated. New Mexico State Police alongside deputies from the San Miguel Sheriff’s Office and New Mexico Game and Fish unloaded the packed trailer. The toys were placed in boxes to then be sorted and given to the children by officers. The toy that comes with them to help a child through a tough time is huge,” said Maj. Mike Schroeder of the Marines. Schroeder is also an officer with the Albuquerque Police Department and knows firsthand just how difficult something is. ‘as simple as a toy is important for children going through a scary situation.’ It shows law enforcement not only that they are the ones arresting people, but that we care about the community and its members, wherever we are in the state,” Schroeder said. “Just having a stuffed animal is enough to bring them out of that sad state just enough to be able to interact with us a bit more so that we can take better care of them.” The boxes were overloaded with items like stuffed animals, toy cars, action figures, books, and basketballs. For New Mexico State Police Lt. Jake Romero, the huge donation came as no surprise. He’s a former Marine and he knows what it means to live up to their Semper Fidelis motto. “I miss seeing that smile that they usually have. You can actually see more concern in their eyes than in their smiles,” Romero said. “If it just makes them smile, that will be great.” Toys can also help parents who are stressed about their situation. “It helps them get out of the monotony. They have nothing to do. They are bored. It stresses out the parents. They get a toy, they have something to do, they have something to entertain with the parents. It helps both of them to forget that they may have lost everything in the fires.It also gives the parent the opportunity to give the toy to the child.So it’s a win-win situation for both of them, you know. Mom and Dad may not be home right now, but we can always give you something,” Schroeder said. for Tots told KOAT they’re ready for another ride. if necessary. .

The Hermits Peak Calf Canyon fire has displaced thousands of New Mexicans, many of whom are staying in shelters, hotels or with friends and family.

Some families have lost everything, while others are waiting to see if their homes will still stand when evacuation orders are lifted.

On Tuesday, the Marines dropped off a huge donation to officers in northern New Mexico as part of Toys for Tots. The mission is to help bring smiles back to children who had to leave their homes because of the forest fire.

About 500 toys were donated. New Mexico State Police alongside deputies from the San Miguel Sheriff’s Office and New Mexico Game and Fish unloaded the packed trailer.

The toys were placed in boxes to then be sorted and distributed to the children by the officers.

“Giving them the ability to have a toy with them to help a child through a tough time is huge,” said Maj. Mike Schroeder of the Marines.

Schroeder is also an officer with the Albuquerque Police Department and knows firsthand how important something as simple as a toy is for kids going through a scary situation.

“It shows law enforcement not only that they are the ones arresting people, but that we care about the community and its members, wherever we are in the state,” Schroeder said. “Just having a stuffed animal is enough to bring them out of that sad state just enough to be able to interact with us a bit more so that we can take better care of them.”

The boxes were overloaded with items like stuffed animals, toy cars, action figures, books and basketballs. For New Mexico State Police Lt. Jake Romero, the huge donation came as no surprise. He’s a former Marine and he knows what it means to live up to their Semper Fidelis motto.

“I miss seeing that smile that they usually have. You can actually see more concern in their eyes than in their smiles,” Romero said. “If it just makes them smile, it’s going to be awesome.”

Toys can also help parents who are stressed about their situation.

“It helps them get out of the monotony. They have nothing to do. They are bored. It stresses out the parents. They get a toy, they have something to do, they have something to entertain with the parents. It helps them both get out of their minds that they may have lost everything in the fires.It also gives the parent the chance to give the toy back to the child.So it’s a win-win for both, you know. Mom and Dad may not be able to be home right now, but we can always give you something,” Schroeder said.

Toys for Tots told KOAT they are prepared to take another ride if needed.

If you would like to donate a new toy for children ages 14 and under affected by the wildfires, you can contact Paul Caputo of Toys for Tots at (505) 975-2033.