Quite the pet project

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Laura Ayers (right) hands a stuffed poodle to Shaylee Key, 5, at the Keizer Community Food Bank March 28. Ayers has been doing such acts for eight years at the food bank. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)

Laura Ayers (right) hands a stuffed poodle to Shaylee Key, 5, at the Keizer Community Food Bank March 28. Ayers has been doing such acts for eight years at the food bank. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

Laura Ayers does more than just give food at the Keizer Community Food Bank each Thursday.

Whenever she spots a child in line, the 83-year-old Laura becomes something of a child herself as she sneaks over to a bag and pulls out a stuffed animal.

“Most of the time I’ll hide the animal behind my back and tap them on the shoulder, then hand it to them,” Laura said. “Most of the time, the kids’ eyes just light up.”

Laura has been giving stuffed animals to children each Thursday morning for the past eight years. At times that has meant 15 to 20 a week, though these days it’s more like eight to 10 a week. Still, that means thousands of stuffed animals have been given away.


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