The tradition of Christmas giveaways continues in Coalmont
On December 12, the doors of the Coalmont United Methodist Church will open at 8 a.m., and anyone who cannot comfortably afford to provide an adequate Christmas for their family is invited to simply “show up and take what is needed.” This free Christmas give-away typically offers household items, clothing for all ages, toys, and more. The quantity and type of items vary considerably from one year to the next.
The Coalmont Christmas tradition began almost twenty years ago. The late Jane Creighton Tolbert, originally from Coalmont, saw the need to help make Christmas a happier time for some of the folks in her hometown. Jane and her daughter, Nancy, were delivering a Christmas present to their cousin, Sam Creighton, when they noticed children standing in the cold without a warm winter coat. Jane and Nancy soon made another trip to the mountain with gently used, outgrown clothes they had collected from family and friends. The next year, Jane began filling Christmas wish lists for children and adults. The lists and her efforts grew over the years and became known as “Jane’s Christmas Express.
Jane’s daughter, Nancy Tolbert Yilmaz, a resident of Roswell, Georgia, has continued the started by her mother. Nancy and her assistants volunteer to make Christmas more joyous than it might otherwise be for some Grundy County residents.