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Extra happy ending to Teddy Bear tale

Serendipitous is how Bruce Reid describes his delivery to the Salvation Army this week.

Just in time to add to Christmas hampers are 40 teddy bears, 40 Milly Molly dolls and 200 books from the Milly Molly series.

Gisborne Salvation Army captain Kevin Waugh said they would go into 75 hampers to be gifted to families who the Sallies had been working with over 2020.

The hampers include wrapping paper and cellotape so the families can wrap the presents themselves.

Bruce Reid is the Milly Molly sales and marketing manager and a family friend of the Waughs.

Driving home to Gisborne from Auckland last week, Bruce happened to check a message from his co-working space in Tauranga.

It was about a Tauranga Whitcoulls donation of 40 teddy bears that needed a lift to Gisborne — just where he was headed.

So Bruce stopped in Tauranga and picked up the bears for Gisborne.

While driving through the Waioeka Gorge he thought about the opportunity for Milly Molly to add to the festive giveaway. So he decided to match the 40 bears with 40 dolls, and add 200 books.

The Milly Molly series of 66 books were authored and illustrated locally in Tairawhiti and became an international success.

“We are thrilled to be involved in an initiative that supports the wellbeing of local families, and commend the Sallies on their fantastic work,” said Bruce.

A BEARY MERRY CHRISTMAS: Salvation Army Captain Kevin Waugh with one of the 40 teddy bears delivered by family friend and Milly Molly sales and marketing manager Bruce Reid (right), who added 40 Milly Molly dolls and 200 books to the Christmas donation. They will be bringing extra Christmas cheer to children when they are distributed with the Salvation Army's Christmas hampers this year. Picture by Rebecca Grunwell