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I wanted to take a moment to publicly thank all those who made our 14th annual Ayer Police Holiday Toy Drive a huge success. The Ayer Police Department was able to collect over 3,000 new toys, all of which were distributed locally on Dec. 18 to approximately 500 needy area children by Loaves and Fishes.

This year’s record-breaking collection is truly remarkable as the window of opportunity to collect toys was narrow with the late arrival of Thanksgiving.

This would not have been possible without the support of the good citizens of Ayer and the Ayer business community. I would like to recognize several local businesses, agencies and organizations that were instrumental to this year’s success: Carlin’s Tavern, Renaissance Electronics Corporation, North Middlesex Savings Bank, IC Federal Credit Union, Nashoba Valley Express, Fresh Ayer Sports, Apple Valley Continuing Care Center, Pauline’s Variety, Ayer Gulf, Ayer Convenience Store, Ayer Post Office, Ayer Town Hall employees, Ayer Public Library, Ayer Shirley Middle School Student Council and the Ayer Police Superior Officer’s Union.

A special thanks to David Berry, Johnna Brissette, Pauline Conley and Emil Docekal, Gilson, Linda Guinard, Judith Hadley, Robert Hebb, Joanne and James Lavoie, Gary Luca, William and Mary Noeth, Danny Patel, Robert Pontbriand, Victoria and Stephen Roche, Terri Rollins, Michael Snee, Mary Spinner, Richard and Joan Teno, and all those who contributed generously and wished to remain anonymous.

I would also like to thank Ayer Public Access Channel, The Public Spirit reporter Jonathan Bishop (who not only covered our cause, but also helped us load toys onto trucks!) and Nashoba Publishing Editor Kate King for all the exposure given to our efforts to help brighten the holidays for those children in need. Your assistance was greatly needed and very much appreciated.

Best wishes for a safe and happy 2015.

Sgt. John MacDonald

Ayer Police Department