From shaving his head in support of a cancer patient to skydiving, 44-year-old Gregg Dodd has completed everything but two items on his yearly bucket list… one of which has inspired his community in Columbus, Ohio.
“Last January 1, I woke up and decided I was going to do 52 things for the new year,” said Dodd. “Number seventeen on the list is ‘making a wish come true’. Around the holidays you start hearing about all these families in need, so I started keeping an eye open on what sort of ways I could help.”
Dodd got word of a local single mother with three teenage children. That’s when he decided that they would be the family who’s wish he’d make come true this year.
“I heard that the mother of this family was in an abusive relationship,” he said. “She uses the soup kitchen a few times a week and cannot even afford a Christmas tree. This really struck a chord with me and I thought this could be someone I can really help.”
Dodd put a call out on Facebook for donations for the family and within minutes had received an overwhelming amount of responses.
Over 200 people brought gift cards and monetary donations to Dodd’s home, totaling an estimated $5,000.
“I’ve been called everything from a hero to ‘Santa Dodd’,” he said. “I keep reminding people that it’s not just me, it’s a loving community that really want to do something profound.”
Last night, 25 of the locals gathered at Dodd’s home, where they wrapped the gifts for the family who will get them tonight.
“I’ve never met this family before,” Dodd said. “I’m not sure if they know that magnitude of whats going to happen.”
“I absolutely would do this again. I think this is going to become an annual tradition. People appreciate the opportunity to give and this has inspired others to help other families out there. It’s really brought out the Christmas spirit in people.”