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Auto dealer puts Boys & Girls Club children on two wheels

December 17, 2009

HAGERSTOWN -- Christmas came early Thursday for more than five dozen youths from Boys & Girls Club of Washington County.

The children arrived at Younger Toyota on Dual Highway by the vanful from six county clubs, knowing a big surprise awaited.

Sixty-five new bicycles were lined up in the dealership's showroom, and owner Brandon Younger said it was the first time for such a giveaway.

"It's always better to give than receive. We try to live that," said Younger, who said bike helmets were provided for children who needed one.

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Buck Browning, director of development for Boys & Girls Club, said the children who received the bikes were selected from the Pennsylvania Avenue, Noland Village, Elgin Station, Frederick Manor, Cascade and Hancock centers. They were chosen based on attendance, participation and effort in school, and, in some cases, where there was need.

"This is probably one of the biggest, nicest events in the 13 years I've been with the club. This is unbelievable," Browning said.

Jenell Moore, whose 7-year-old daughter, Trinity, attends the Pennsylvania Avenue club, said her daughter loves going to the club. Trinity's Christmas list included a bike, because her old one was rusty.

"This is awesome. When you walk in and see all the bikes and everyone waiting, it's very exciting," Moore said.

It took some patience as the children waited for all of the vans to arrive. Once the vans were all at the dealership, Younger and his staff made a receiving line and gave high-fives and words of congratulations to the youths as they entered the showroom and headed to their bikes.

Devon McCarty, 10, of the Hancock club, promptly went to Younger, shook his hand and thanked him for the gift.

"I thought it was really cool that I got a new bike and wanted to thank him," Devon said.

Zenaisia Walker, 11, of the Elgin Station club, said her bike at home had two flat tires. She had a hard time containing her excitement.

"I wouldn't stop talking about it. I kept looking at the clock at school," she said.

Nia Hart, 10, said she was happy because she wanted a bike for Christmas. Her father was overwhelmed.

"It's an amazing thing. It's nice to see so many caring and giving people. For a lot of these kids, this is a miracle," Milton Hart said.

Younger said money for the event came from the Younger Motor Cars Foundation, which helps charitable organizations in the area. He challenged others to look for ways to help in the community.

"The bigger thing is this is meant to spur others. As a car dealer in the worst (economic) year in 37 years, there are definitely other people who can help. There are plenty of other kids who need other things," Younger said.

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