Jere Kessler, an 80 old retired mechanical engineer from Auburn, Indiana has been making wooden toys for charity since 2007. It all began when he discovered a Methodist Church in Huntsville, TX where he was living that donated Christmas toys to children. He has made 362 toys and hopes to reach 500 by the end of the year. All of Jere’s toys go to Aviva, a foster care service, for the children they represent. He has over sixty different items that he makes: from semi-trucks to airplanes, doll cradles to high chairs. He started our small, making hand toys of zoo animals and cars.
Jere uses the resort’s woodworking shop for the first woodcuts and goes to his small workshop at his park model home to complete the toys. He admits that he “dumpster dives” for free wood at new home construction sites. Occasionally he forgets and leaves his ladder there as a thank you gift.
If you know someone who inspires kindness within the Greater Tucson community, nominate them for a Ben's Bell! https://bensbells.org/nominate-bellee