By Brittany Hanson/Garden Grove Journal
Stanton City Council member David Shawver said that oftentimes, the people who give the most are the people whose names you wouldn’t find in the newspaper.
At Tuesday’s city council meeting, Mayor Ed Royce Sr. handed out recognition awards to 12 people who, in the words of Shawver, “Give of their time and give of their pocketbook.”
Much of the giving by these people has been somehow related to holiday needs and charity.
Jerry Wells is called the “Tree Man,” because of the work he does involving trees for the city. But not just any trees, they are Christmas tree donations for needy families in Stanton and surrounding areas. Wells also accepted an award on behalf of Clive Mangum.
Wells’ trees are picked by him personally and delivered to the needy families and to are used in charity events in the city.
The next recipient for award walked to the front of the room with a great, big smile on his face and perfectly combed silver hair. Jim Nelson, a long time resident of Stanton, has helped in tutoring in after school programs, volunteered in the recreation programs and started collecting toys for children in the community.
Nelson’s work in putting together the toy collection has been a part of the community for a long time, said Shawver, and has helped many needy families have a little holiday cheer.
Next on the community nice list was Dave Morse, a man who for one month for many years has donned a beard and red suit as the community Santa Claus.
“Twenty-five hundred kids, all with colds, sit on his lap,” said Shawver, “And you know what he gets as a reward? Two weeks in bed, laid up.”
Allen Othman shelled out money to help pay for 1,000 pounds of turkey during the community Thanksgiving meal that Stanton serves eat year at Harry’s Café. Othman’s money has also gone to pay for charity Christmas trees, swing sets and repairs at St. Polycarp Catholic School.
George Psaras accepted awards for himself and Andreas Psaras, who was absent. They manage Harry’s Café and over the years have cooked thousands of pounds of turkey on Thanksgiving for needy in Stanton.
The Psaras’ have also been called on to provide food and food preparation for other events.
One such event was the Easter egg hunt pancake breakfast. As the city staff was quickly running out of pancakes, George was called upon to help. George walked out of his kitchen, informed his restaurant patrons he would not be preparing them anymore breakfast that morning and got to work with pancake flipping.
“You just do the best you can, you know,” said Psaras.
Alfonso Valdez got recognition for donations from Food for Less.
Yvonne and Allen Ansdale, the owners of Adventure City in Stanton were recognized for ongoing financial gifts to the city for charity events.
Stanton came up short on cash to go up to the Santa’s Workshop headquarters in Los Angeles, so the Ansdales donated money to help buy more toys.
Danny Kim received recognition for giving the largest money contribution to buy children’s toys at Christmas Time. Kim was quiet when he received his award and in a thanked the city council with a small bow of thanks.
Lastly, Jim Barisic, of Brandywine Homes was thanked not only for his developments but also for remaining a part of the community.
“You know, he’s built some pretty nice places to live in Stanton,” said Shawver, “but he’s also put back into the city and the charities.”
Barisic said, “You know, working in cities like Stanton, Garden Grove and Anaheim . . . it’s like working with a family. You look at a place you like and everyone knows everyone. And they all work together.”