Why am I doing this?
For those of you who do not know me, my name is Cory Coulter. I have been a resident of Cumming, GA since 1996. Actually, I live about 10 miles outside of Cumming, but it is a Cumming mailing address.
My birthday is December 10, and the Toys for Tots toys drive is my birthday party. I started this with a private party for my 39th birthday. For my 40th birthday, I decided to make it an open event. I always wanted to have a big, blowout birthday party. The owners of Rooster's Cafe, Mike & Kenny, were kind enough to let me host it there. People had a good time and asked if I was going to do it next year. So I did, and it has been getting better ever since.
That still does not answer why.
My 39th birthday was a special event and I really wanted to share it with my friends. However, I wasn't looking to collect gifts. How do you have a party and not have people bring you presents? I found the answer in the local newspaper. They had a story about a local girl who, for her 8th birthday, collected pet supplies to give to the Humane Society. That's it! I will ask everyone to bring a donation for a charity. Hmm. Now what charity? Then a friend pointed out... Birthday – December – Christmas. How about a Christmas Charity like Toys for Tots?
So, now you know why Toys for Tots. Next, why was my 39th birthday so special?
Because I was having it. A few month earlier, group of religious fanatics tried to kill me. I was lucky. I got away without a scratch. 2752 people were not. At 8:46 AM on the morning of September 11, 2001, I was in the Sun Microsystems offices on the 25th floor of the south tower of the World Trade Center buildings. Click here to see my visitors badge.
The events of September 11, made me realize how fleeting life is. There I was looking at 40, asking myself “What have I done with my life?” Now I can look back and say “Good start.”
So come on up and have a good time. Don't forget to bring a new, unwrapped toy.
Because every child deserves a little Christmas.