CHESTER, VA (WWBT) – Today we're passing on $300 to a moving company manager who every year about this time, transforms the company warehouse into an enchanted North Pole village. Then he invites hundreds of disadvantaged and special needs kids in the tri-cities to a party and let's them pick out presents. A viewer decided William Jones' generosity deserves an Act of Kindness.
William Jones spends two weeks each December decorating and assembling shipping crates. He adds layers of holiday trim, garland, lights, trees and reindeer until the space sparkles as Santa Land.
When kids arrive at his North Pole outpost they'll find music and food, and of course presents; piles of presents. Jones shops all year long for Christmas gifts.
"I find a lot of good deals," Jones said.
For decades he's worked two jobs, spending several thousand dollars of his own money so kids can pick several gifts from ToyLand.
"Last year I had 247 kids here. I try and do 300 kids every year," he said. "I love it. I've been doing this for 25 years helping kids out."
Jones' Christmas joy grew out of tragedy long before when his own family, the girl he'd planned to marry, perished in a car crash two weeks before their wedding.
"Fiancée and baby, she was pregnant with a 6-month-old, car hit them and killed them both," Jones said.
It was Christmas 1965; Jones had given his fiancée the car as a gift.
"I bought that car that morning and the guy hit it that night," Jones recalled.
Since then the former Marine has made helping needy kids his lifelong mission.
"Seeing the smile and happiness on kid's faces," he said.
He formed the nonprofit 'Williams Kids Foundation' six years ago. Diane Dale Haworth is a supporter.
Diane Haworth: "We witnessed firsthand the beautiful giving of presents and the joy that he gets from doing this. It's amazing that somebody would do this all of his life. I'm a firm believer in acts of kindness."
Sabrina Squire: "Here's 100, 200, 300 dollars."
Diane couldn't wait to pass it on. We followed her straight to Premier Moving and transport and once inside the Chester warehouse, she got right down to business.
Diane Haworth: "So stretch your hand out and let me give you this money, 100, 200, 300 dollars."
William Jones: "Ok thank you. Like I say, I can buy a whole lot with that. I still got a lot more to buy."
Jones uses 100 percent of donations to buy toys, he's has already filled three shipping crates with presents, he'll keep shopping for gifts to give the 200 or so kids he visits at local hospitals, and shelters. During Christmas and others he helps during the year.
Sabrina Squire: "So what do you think of what she's done?"
William Jones: I love it. I've seen this happen before but I never thought it would happen to me."
Diane Haworth: "I'm so glad."
William Jones: "It's a wonderful gift and it will be used in a wonderful way."