The Goodfellows Club of Owensboro has been impacting the lives of children and their families in need since the early 20th century. 

For most of those years, the Messenger-Inquirer, which played a role in founding it, and club leaders have received letters throughout the year from some of the children themselves or their parents who have been clothed, fed and cared for through the donations of a generous community.

Some send money. Others describe, in detail, the hardships they face as single parents or grandparents trying to raise young people and always unique but sobering financial burdens. All say thank you. 

Like this young mother, whose handwritten letter this year included $3.10.

“Thank you isn’t the strongest words for the gift you have given my daughter ...” she wrote. “Now I know she will be warm for the winter months. I thank GOD for giving you the ability to do this for families like us.

“P.S. This is the last of my money for the month. I know it’s nothing to you, but it’s all I have. God bless.”

Or this mother: “Wanted to write a thank you letter because, if not for this foundation, my children wouldn’t know what it’s like to get new school clothes. I have been disabled for six years now. It covers the bills and bare necessities and sometimes I still need help. Life has been really stressful on me and them, and we greatly appreciate the help your foundation gives. God bless you.”

Other families simply recognize the stress that something as simple as a new coat or shoes can add to a tight budget.

“I wanted to thank you for your generous donation so my daughter could get clothes for school,” one letter read. “When you are on a tight budget, everything and everyone who helps makes the stress of life better.”

 Another family was happy to see smiles on their children’s faces.

“We can’t thank you enough for being able to provide our children with a winter coat, clothes and shoes,” they wrote. “The children received them today and were overjoyed. Please know how much you’ve helped them and how appreciative we are of

see letters/page b6

your kindness. Thank you once again for your generosity. It means more to our family than we could ever express!”

 Letters like these strike to the heart of what the Goodfellows Club is, said President-elect Barry Carden, the Messenger-Inquirer’s circulation director.

“The gratitude is so moving,” he said. “I have a heart for the Goodfellows Club, as I believe our community does. The notes and cards hit (at) what the Goodfellows Club is about. It’s about hope. When we can lend support to a family and the child has the opportunity to be successful at school and feel good about themselves, then we have given hope life.”

Donations can be made to Goodfellows Club, Messenger-Inquirer, Box 1480, Owensboro, KY 42302, by bringing contributions to the newspaper office at 1401 Frederica St or online at

Dec. 17, 2017 Roll Call

Previously reported … $100,109.93

In memory of Hazel Reynolds, Guy

Reynolds, Anna Reynolds, and Glen

House … $500

Anonymous … $400

South Hampton Homemakers … $300

Independent Insurance Agents of

Owensboro … $250

In memory of Melissa Baber by the

Hager Preschool staff … $132

In memory of Zachary, and in honor

of Ally, Tyler, Holt, Bella, and Tucker

by Ron Hicks and Mereda Hicks … $100

Traveling Golf Foursome … $100

Traveling Golf Foursome … $100

Office Furniture & Forms LLC … $50

In loving memory of Joni and Fred

Wetzel by Jo Wetzel … $50

Thanks for what you do for the kids … $20

Total as of Dec. 17, 2017 … $102,111.93

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