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Miracle on 31st Street asking for toy donations

Organizer recovering after heart attack
Posted at 3:25 PM, Dec 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-14 18:25:13-05

Organizers say an annual toy drive for kids is in jeopardy of not being able to deliver this year.

The Miracle on 31st Street helps thousands of Tucson children and about this time each year the organizers ask people for last minute donations to reach their goal. But this year they need the public's help more than ever before. 

For 46 years Ramon Gonzales has organized, collected donations and passed out toys. It began when he decided to spend $125.00 to buy toys for the kids living on his block, 31st Street on the south side. He's since moved but still works to provide toys to kids who's parents sometimes struggle to provide gifts at Christmas. 

This year, Gonzalez is recovering after suffering two small heart attacks. His wife says doctors told her if he suffers another one it will likely kill him. 

"At the hospital, believe me, i wasnt feeling too good, but i knew i had a responsibility to do," He says the toy drive gives him purpose. 

Now, Gonzales is pleading with people to help him finish his work to make the holidays happier for kids. 

"45 years they've come through and I'm asking the community once more, please come through again," Gonzales told KGUN9. 

Before his heart attack Gonzalez had collected just 200 or so toys, despite needed around 10,000. He smiled and watched Wednesday as people came to his home on West Ajo Way to drop off donations. 

Nora Ruiz brought armfuls of toys around lunchtime. She and her co-workers decided to forego their usual gift exchange and spend the money on toys for the toy drive, "I heard his story on the news and it really touched my heart and I came to work and said I know who we can take these gifts to."

The 46th annual Ramon's Miracle on 31st Street Toy giveaway will take place December 18 at Casino Del Sol at 9 a.m. 

If you would like to make donation you can drop off a toy at:

Ramon's Home: 2019 West Ajo Way

The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce: 823 E. Speedway Blvd. 

Old Pueblo Healthcare: 5981 E. Grant Road #115