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Kellar, Salvation Army accept holiday donations outside Vons

Councilmember Bob Kellar, left, rings the bell with his wife Kathy, Grace and Steve Kim and Salvation Army envoys Jerry and Laura Bloom outside Vons. Ryan Mancini/The Signal

On behalf of the Salvation Army Santa Clarita Corps, Councilman Bob Kellar accepted a donation of $50,000 from Sand Canyon Country Club CEO Steve Kim on Saturday.

Standing with his wife Kathy outside Vons on Soledad Canyon Road, Kellar rang the bell with envoys Jerry and Laura Bloom to collect money for the Salvation Army. Not long after starting at 10 a.m., they had collected a total of $60,000.

“We’ve had a very good day so far and we’re not done yet,” Kellar said. “We’re not done yet.”

Kellar’s affection for the organization began with his mother Ileen, who was orphaned at 11 years old and was raised by the Salvation Army. He participated in honor of his mother, who died on New Year’s Eve in 1998.

“They raised my mother until she was 18 years old in an orphanage in mid-state California,” he said. “So I’ve got a soft spot in my heart for the Salvation Army and all of the great work they do. My wife and I are only too happy to be a part of the board and do whatever we can.”

Kellar also sits on the Santa Clarita chapter’s advisory board. He reached out to Kim, who was curious and wanted to help out in some way.

“I’m always looking for a good cause,” Kim said.

Bloom added that this was a significant donation for the Salvation Army in Santa Clarita.

“What’s nice to know is that what’s given here in Santa Clarita stays here in Santa Clarita,” he said, “and expands the programs, strengthens the programs that we already have in place and actually gets us looking towards doing more. (It’s) a more focused meeting of needs of people who need an encouraging hand-up.”

In the last year, the Salvation Army has taken care of 1,400 children in SCV, as well as providing holiday meals, toys and summer camp for children and families, Bloom said.

“It absolutely goes for a good purpose by caring for those in need,” said Kathy Kellar.

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