Christmas Angel 2017 is in full swing

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(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(3TV/CBS 5) -

Christmas Angel started in the Valley in 1986.

The Community Relations Director at 3TV at the time, Marlene Klotz-Collins, started it all. We affectionately call her the “Mother of Christmas Angel.” And we’ll see her along the Christmas Angel stops this year, you can bet on that.

That first year we were in one mall and we had no idea if anyone would respond.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Weather blog]

Christown Mall was gracious enough to host our solo tree and the Salvation Army was ready to distribute presents. We did weather lives out there almost every night, beginning on Thanksgiving evening right up until Dec. 21. The goal, the optimistic goal, was enough gifts to give to about 2,500 children who were about to go without holiday gifts. To Marlene and 3TV’s credit, the Salvation Army was able to serve 3,200 children.

[MORE: Christmas Angel program brings holiday joy to kids]

[APP/MOBILE USERS: Click/tap here to see picture of Marlene Klotz-Collins]

The program has grown through the years and has become a model for Christmas Angel programs sprouting up in other cities. Arizona is the model that others use because it’s been so successful.

[APP/MOBILE USERS: Click/tap here to see picture of Christmas Angel trees]

Why has it been successful? That’s easy. The people of Arizona always answer the call. This year the Salvation Army is expecting to serve more than 50,000 children around metro Phoenix and in northern Arizona. 

[APP/MOBILE USERS: Click/tap here to see picture of trees with Christmas Angel tags]

People ask me a lot about my favorite Christmas Angel story. I have many.

[MORE: Forgotten Angel 2017]

But my favorites are the people who were served by Angel when they were children and now wouldn’t miss the opportunity to give back. We, once again, invite you to visit one of our Christmas Angel trees and, as the guy on the commercial says, “Earn you wings!” Happy and safe holidays all.

[APP/MOBILE USERS: Click/tap here to see picture of Christmas Angel graphic]

[APP/MOBILE USERS: Click/tap here to see picture of participating malls]

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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