December 22, 2014

Elyria
Mostly sunny
38°F
test

‘Ransom notes’ motivate office to donate to Chronicle toy drive

Patty Pasternak poses with Marky Maypo and the ransom letter. (CT photo by Lucy Goldsmith.)

ELYRIA — Patty Pasternak thought it was odd when her vintage Marky Maypo doll disappeared from her office at the Lorain County Department of Job and Family Services.

But she started laughing after ransom notes appeared from a kidnapper.

“I had to tie yellow ribbons all around the office,” Pasternak said.

There were detailed instructions on how to get her beloved doll back, including raising money for The Chronicle-Telegram’s Not-Forgotten Box.

For $5, workers could purchase vouchers for dress-down days.

“Some people would give me $25 or $30,” Pasternak said.

In the end, employees collected more than $750 for needy kids, a subject close to their hearts as social workers.

The doll, which Pasternak’s mom ordered in the 1960s using Maypo cereal box tops, was returned Monday.

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Pasternak dropped off 100 toys she purchased with help from Tina Jackson, a clerical specialist for the agency.

Shopping was half the fun, Pasternak said.

“Bargain shopping — I’m crazy about it,” she said. “Gloves, socks, crafts — I got this cute food set from Aldi’s for $8, who knew?”

Jackson said Pasternak is a formidable shopper. Among her purchases was a $15 pink Barbie Beetle car — complete with a doll — that had an original sticker price of $59.99.

The toys delivered from Job and Family Services workers were among 1,200 gifts dropped off at the newspaper Monday, said Lucy Goldsmith, customer service manager for The Chronicle and its sister paper, The Gazette in Medina.

The day’s bounty brought the toy count to 4,521 as The Chronicle easily passed the halfway mark with four days to go. The goal is 8,000 toys, and the deadline is Friday.

Toys may be dropped off 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. today through Friday at the newspaper.

Cash donations are also accepted. Make checks out to the Not-Forgotten Box and mail or drop them off at 225 East Ave., Elyria, OH 44035.

Contact Cindy Leise at 329-7245 or cleise@chroniclet.com.