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Community responds to 4th graders request donating nearly 700 Valentines Day cards

Ava Gabbard received Valentine’s Day cards from across the state and even South Carolina.
Published: Feb. 12, 2021 at 1:24 PM EST
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) -

In January we shared a story about Hazard 4th grader Ava Gabbard collecting Valentine’s Day cards for the residents at the Hazard Nursing Home.

After nearly one month Gabbard received nearly 700 cards from people throughout the community, state, and beyond.

“They came from like all the way out of state like South Carolina and everywhere,” said Ava. “I hope it makes her day and brightens their day. "

To Ava’s mom, Becky Gabbard’s, amazement she knew no card should go to waste.

“What are we gonna do with all these there are so many other people that we can bless. so I started reaching out we contacted the VA hospital and then once we had enough for them I looked at other facilities in Hazard both the Perkins Tower and Gorman Tower. Then we had enough cards for them I started reaching out to the neighboring counties rehab facilities they are both in Knott and Hyden,” said Gabbard.

Ava and her mom dropped off nearly 200 cards at the Hazard Nursing Home on Thursday.

Charlotte Thornsberry, Nursing Home Administrator, says a gesture that the residents will love.

“They have not seen their families since March of last year and just any little thing from the outside means so much to them,” said Thornsberry. “They look forward to something addressed just to them or coming to them personally which each one will get their own little special card with little special writing on it and it will mean the world to them.”

Not only will the residents received a card but others in the community pitched in to make the holiday a little extra special.

“Rudy’s Bakery in town has donated cupcakes, First Baptist Church in Hazard has donated cupcakes, and family and friends have donated candy. Ava and some of her friends got together and they treat bags for others,” said Gabbard. “I have always said that Hazard is the best place to live. I’ve grown up here like you said and just for everyone to want to love my child as much as I do and help her and other people in our community it means a lot.”

What started as an act of kindness by one 4th grader turned into an entire community and beyond sharing the love this Valentine’s Day.

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