Several months ago, a married couple in York County had no reason to worry about the holidays and whether they could put gifts under the Christmas tree for their children.

Both had full-time jobs, one on day shifts and the other on night shifts. They alternated caring for their 6-year-old and 4-year-old girls. It worked, and they felt secure.

Until August, when back-to-back medical problems left the parents with one income and hoping to find help. So, last week, the mother wrote a note to the Press Herald Toy Fund, which for 70 years has helped families through similar unexpected upheaval.

“We have had a very hard and trying few months,” she wrote. “First, the birth of our son proved to be more difficult than we thought. After his birth, I unfortunately began hemorrhaging …(and) then had surgery.

“Only a few weeks following that, my grandfather was sent to Boston for a week to have a tumor removed … I accompanied him to Boston for that week and have been up to his home … twice a week since his surgery.

“Now my husband works six or seven days a week. His income has gotten us by. But I’ll be honest with you, it’s only gotten us by so much. Our bills are barely being paid. I don’t know how we are going to do Christmas at all this year.

“Our kids really deserve a special Christmas. It breaks our hearts that we cannot provide it for them. It’s not their fault that everything has happened to us. We are really in need of a miracle this year.

“Please take our children into consideration. Thank you and Merry Christmas.”

• THE PRESS HERALD TOY FUND in the Spirit of Bruce Roberts uses donations from readers to provide toys to thousands of Maine children who might otherwise not receive holiday gifts because of hardships faced by their parents. Now in its 70th year, the fund is accepting applications for toys from needy families in York, Cumberland, Sagadahoc, Androscoggin, Lincoln and Knox counties.

• DONATIONS to help buy the toys can be made at or by writing checks to the Portland Press Herald Toy Fund and mailing them to the fund at P.O. Box 7310, Portland, ME 04112.

• FOR MORE INFORMATION, call 791-6672 or go to:

In memory of Caoimhe  $1500
Anonymous  $500
Richard & Kimberly Brooks  $100
Mark Tux Turkel  $75
In memory of Granna Hilly and Woody  $100
William Poole   $100
From: Kirsten, Lauren, Ella, Annie, and Liam to Bruce Roberts  $100
Janice M. Gray  $100
In memory of John, Jack, Mark and Bethany Murgita from Rockland, Maine. Christmas Joy! $100
Dick Hall  $150
Merry Xmas – Jim and Kathy Ryan  $100
Peter and Debby Murray  $100
In honor of our grandchildren, Piper, Scarlett, Dylan, Camdyn, Memphis, & Iris. Love Grammy & Grampy Floyd  $100
Jenifer Stewart  $100
Patricia Frederick  $100
In honor of our grandchildren & great grandson – Roger & Janice Merrow  $50
In memory of Carl & Christine Shapazian. With love, Maryanne & Tim  $200
Greg & Donna  $100
Barbara Gauditz  $1000
Jack & Susan Bremer  $500
The Tuesday Group  $180
Candelore Family  $200
In memory of my husband Dick who loved kids & Christmas, Love, Joanne Sullivan  $50
In loving memory of Ronnie Strout, from his wife Joanne.  $50
Murray Family Foundation  $200
In memory of Red & Dot Swett  $100
Earl & Stasia Goodwin  $50
All our grand & great-grand children – Gerald & Marie Day  $100
In memory of Anthony “Tommy” Langella. I love you! Dad & Lucy  $50
In loving memory of my Mom & Dad, Cliff & Gerry Ashley, from daughter Joan  $25
In loving memory of Ruth Bennett and Elmer Constant  $100
In loving memory of Dana, from all of us who loved him then and always will  $50
In memory of Ann Waterhouse  $50
Anonymous  $100
In memory of Robert Dout  $50
Eugenia & Francis Norris  $25
David & Judith Kelly  $300
Michael Frost DMD  $100
Happy Holidays! Claire Brooks  $25
In loving memory of our parents: William & Martha Horr and Mile & Roberta Thompson  $30
Pamela Ferland  $100
From the Ruby Hattitudes Red Hats of South Portland  $50
In memory of Mary & Louis Peters and Beverly & Virgil Plaisted. Merry Christmas!  $75
Ben Odom  $150
In loving memory of our parents, Stan & Ruth Blake and our sister Janet Blake. Linda Cooper and Bonnie Kam  $50
Family Campers & RV’s Pine Tree Campers Chapter  $100
Phyllis Reames  $50
In memory of Helen Franis Delaney, from Anne & Joe  $100
In memory of Marie Brien, who loved all children and Christmas – Kathie,Warren, and Ernie  $25
In memory of Mom, Laly  $100
In memory of our parents: Keith & Del Libby and Paul & Peg Garvin, Merry Christmas, Pat & Jack  $100

YEAR TO DATE: $46,576.50

Comments are not available on this story.