Kettle spotlight: Retired postal worker delivers goodness

Dec 11, 2020

Randy Schoonover is a retired postal worker who has been ringing bells for The Salvation Army every Christmas for more than a quarter century. 

Neither snow nor rain nor car crashes have ever stopped Randy from volunteering at the red kettles. 

“One time I was in a car accident and I had no way to get to my bell ringing shift,” Randy recalled. “I took the bus from Blaine, transferred buses a bunch of times, and got to my kettle in downtown Minneapolis. Nothing was going to stop me from ringing … because nothing ever stopped Jesus from touching people’s hearts.”

Throughout the years, Randy has rung bells at many kettle locations in the Twin Cities. 

“Uptown, downtown, Coon Rapids, Roseville – I’ve been all over,” said Randy, 76, who worked at the post office in downtown Minneapolis for 35 years.

This year, Randy has been ringing at Cub in Roseville. In addition to ringing, he also volunteers as a meal server at The Salvation Army Harbor Light Shelter in downtown Minneapolis. He’s been doing so for about six years. 

“The greatest thing I can do is serve,” Randy said. 

Randy understands how busy The Salvation Army’s staff and volunteers are during the Christmas season, because he was equally busy working at the post office during the holidays.  

“It was wild, and it was wonderful,” Randy said, chuckling.  

Deliver goodness

You, too, can deliver goodness to people in need by signing up to ring.

Your help is desperately needed: The number of volunteer bell ringers has dropped 15 percent compared to last year. This drop is resulting in thousands upon thousands of dollars of lost donations. 

Bell ringing is a fun and safe fundraising activity that now includes enhanced social distancing and sanitization measures, with Apple Pay and Google Pay options for touchless giving. During a two-hour shift, you’ll raise an average of $60 for Salvation Army services – enough money to provide a day’s worth of food and shelter for a person experiencing homelessness. 

No time to ring? There are many other ways to help The Salvation Army Rescue Christmas for families in need. 

Enlist in Love’s Army by giving a donation or ringing bells at a red kettle. Your gifts of time and money will help Rescue Christmas for people and families struggling to get through the pandemic.

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