Mrs. ‘Glassport’ Claus brings Christmas to kids in the Mon Valley

GLASSPORT, Pa. — ‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the firehall

Volunteers were stirring; they’re on the ball!

The presents were wrapped for the kids with care

It’s thanks to Mrs. Glassport Claus who’s always there.

“I really did try my best to make sure they have an amazing Christmas,” said Mrs. Glassport Claus.

Outside of Christmas, she goes by Samantha Rawagah. Her heart is with kids in the Mon Valley — specifically, older kids 10 to 18 years old. She says they’re often left out of present collections.

“A lot of parents have to get over the fact that it is OK to ask for help because I don’t judge and I’m here,” said Mrs. Glassport Claus.

So for the second year in a row, she called on the community to buy presents for kids who asked for them in the South Allegheny School District.

“They bought every last wish off the wish list, which was thousands of items long,” said Rawagah.

Everything from Legos, to dolls, to cowboy boots.

Kids who go to Steel Center, the career and technical school serving South Allegheny School District, asked for tools.

“What is really great is this is like giving a teen boy the ability to go into his job and give him what he already needs,” said Rawagah.

Along with the gifts, the teens each get socks, toiletries, a blanket, and a new toothbrush.

Volunteers like Vickie Mihalek are helping to wrap 4,000 gifts for 300-400 teens and pre-teens in Glassport, Port Vue, Liberty, and Lincoln boroughs.

“The kids need help,” said Mihalek. “It is amazing what people are doing at this time of year to help bring joy and happiness to these kids.”

Whether that’s buying the gifts, volunteering to wrap, or loading and unloading seven firetrucks worth of toys, the Mon Valley really stepped up for the South Allegheny teens.

“It’s all about the kids. That’s what Christmas is,” said Mihalek.

She sprang to her car, to her team gave a wave,

And away Mrs. Glassport Claus drove; she’s off to save.

And I heard her exclaim as she delivered gifts with delight

“Happy Christmas to all and to all a good night!”