The Central Delaware Marine Corps League will kick off the chapter’s annual Toys for Tots Drive with a two-day event at Dover’s two Toys R Us locations Nov. 4 and 5.


The Central Delaware Marine Corps League will kick off the chapter’s annual Toys for Tots Drive with a two-day event at Dover’s two Toys R Us locations Nov. 4 and 5.

Marines from the detachment will be in uniform at Toys R Us stores, on DuPont Highway and in the Dover Mall both days.

Last year more than 7,000 toys were distributed to almost 2,000 needy Kent County children at Christmas, said Central Delaware Commandant George Weiss.

“We collected over 7,000 toys,” Weiss said in a note thanking the Marine veterans who volunteered. “We purchased 99 toys and the Toys for Tots Foundation contributed 950 toys. On the donation side, we collected more than $4,900. This helped over 1,900 children have a Merry Christmas.”

There also were donations of toys to other destinations, including hospitals, shelters, Head Start programs and programs for Foster Children. All toys collected in Kent County stayed in Kent County.

The program began in 1947 in Los Angeles, when Major Bill Hendricks and other Marine reservists distributed 5,000 toys to needy children. According to the foundation, Marines collected and distributed new and used toys. From Christmas 1980, distribution was limited to new toys. The foundation took charge in 1991, and in 1996, the work of collecting and distributing toys was expanded from Marine Corps Reserve units to include Marine Corps League detachments like the one in Kent County.