Opinion

Hodge: Charlie’s Angels–No need to check this Christmas list twice

Our community is blessed with an amazing number of caring folks if the submissions to Charlie’s Christmas Angels List are any indication.

The criteria to make the Angel list are simple—be a nice person who willingly does something nice for another. Thanks to readers who submitted names of people that made a difference in some way, shape, or form to their life.

With no further delay, here they are:

Local singer/songwriter Jane Eamon said her special angels include Ryan Donn, Rhonda Draper, Carrie Mitchell, and owner of the Minstrel Cafe, Clare Anderson.

Danny Richardson nominates Pastor Lawrence East of Metro Church.

“This man is God’s Warrior on the street. He and his platoon of street conquerors tackle the issues of the homeless. He fights the discouragement and loneliness, which helps the disenfranchised to find hope and peace. For Kelowna he is a God send,” said Danny.

Cam Birge, an on-line Hodge Podge reader from Lake Cowichan, submitted the name of Cindy Heemeryck, the Kelowna leader for Sensible BC.

Donna Lynn Martin submitted the name of Lorraine Stang because “she always goes out of her way to help others no matter what it takes. She is an angel to me and all the seniors that she showers with blessings daily. She is a huge animal lover and is always trying to make the world a better place for all. The world needs more angels like Lorraine.”

Dee Rogers said KCS elementary teacher Pam Toth is her angel. “This gal goes above and beyond her teacher duties.”

Lifetime buddy Dan Thiessen, a true angel in his own right, nominated class act Josh Stilborn as his angel for 2013.

“Josh took a song from an old album I recorded in 1974 (and had not heard in over 35 years) and made the song into an MP3 so both I (the singer/songwriter) and my friend (for whom I wrote the song) could listen to it once again.”

And, I might add, it’s a wonderful song.

Speaking of musicians, the amazingly talented singer (and one of the finest people I know) Deb Stone said she is married to an angel.

“But he doesn’t do any grand gestures. Rich(ard) just lives his life quietly helping others and never making a big deal about it. Cleaning neighbours driveways of snow in winter, cutting lawns in summer, and walking over a mile most days to pick up our grand-daughter. So, like I said, not an angel in a “grand’ manner. Just my angel!”

Donna Donahue nominated her friend Colette Girard of West Kelowna.

“She has volunteered at the food bank in Westbank every Wednesday night for 10 years or more putting hampers together for people who need them. She has been a member of the Catholic

Women’s League for more than 50 years and co-ordinates our CWL Christmas Fair plus works at one of the tables the whole day. She also is the first one to help out anybody in need in the complex where she lives. There are many more selfless things she does but are too numerous to jot down. She is truly an angel in many people’s eyes.”

Ann Zoobkoff nominated her step-daughter Sandi Zoobkoff. “I lost my wonderful husband Bill in August. I thank all my family and friends for standing by me, but most of all I would like to thank Sandi.

Besides being branch manager for Western Financial in Winfield and busy arranging her holiday in November, she made time and was by my side any time I needed her. She is not only my daughter, she is my rock and very best friend.”

Dawn Robertson suggested Larry Watson of Bering Road in Westbank, for maintaining the ditch from Brown Road to Elliot at his own expense and time and for consistently keeping the area litter-free.

Marlene Nickel-Lang nominated co-worker Karen Mattioda.

“Karen has been a foster Mom and has fostered many children over the years. She welcomes children into her home and gives them the care that they need. Karen has two grown children. Her husband Rick and she could have an empty nest but they choose to help and foster children. She deserves a pat on the back for that because it is not always an easy job to do this.”

Ironically, Marlene Nickel-Lang heads up the angel list for my number one angel, my wife Teresa.

“She is my best friend, ever-ever, and is constantly doing kind things for other people. She has helped me a lot over the years and I am lucky to call her my dear friend,” said Teresa.

Other angels on Teresa’s list include co-worker Cindy Clarke—a superstar grandmother, and Purolator worker Vicky Glabus, who brings a smile with her everyday and goes out of her way to assist her clients.

Teresa also named Joy at the Salvation Army store for, helping her find the elusive off button on a musical toy which would not stop playing and was “earning me a lot of dagger stares from other customers.”

Last but not least on Teresa’s list was Sherri Deni who, not only runs a top notch house cleaning service but is never afraid to go out of her way to do and say the little things that mean a lot.

In turn, Deni nominated her kind husband Eric Chapman as an angel. “He is simply the very best grandpa.”

I am blessed to have a lengthy list of amazing folks on my angel list. Some have simply been outstanding friends to me or Teresa on a daily basis, while others have not only helped me but constantly help others.

While there is no real ranking, the first few names that have particularly been there for us this year include Curtis Tulman, Keith Papa Thom, and Peter Comrie.

Other amazing angels that have blessed my world include Bernie and Bettina, Rainer Zigenhagen, Don Moore, Charisse Daley and other board members with Pathways Abilities Society, Yves Beliveau, John Adams, Jim LeGuilloux, Dave Stratten, Sharon and Mike Shepherd, Al Paterson, Randy Zahara, Paul Beaupre, Jim Krahn, Les Thompson, and the inspirational Chris Olson-Brown as well as Sean Connor.

Last, but far from least, my sweet (wife) Tez (Teresa) who has been there day in and day out for me. I am lucky to have you in my life.

Bless you all for making this town, and this world, a nicer place.

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