Twilight on 2012: Good Morning Tucson's 'Nice List'
As 2012 winds down, all week long Good Morning Tucson is looking back at the year that was in our "Twilight on 2012 series." GMT only thought it would be fitting on the morning before Christmas to put together a "Nice List," featuring people who madPhoto: Video by kgun9.com
Reporter: Justin Schecker
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - As 2012 winds down, all week long Good Morning Tucson is looking back at the year that was in our "Twilight on 2012 series."
GMT only thought it would be fitting on the morning before Christmas to put together a "nice list," featuring people who made a positive difference and gave back to the community.
While she officially retired from the United States Congress last January, Gabrielle Giffords continues to inspire Southern Arizona and the country with her remarkable recovery.
Recently, the Arizona Town Hall presented Giffords and her husband Capt. Mark Kelly with the the Shirley Agnos Legacy Award, which honors people who give their lives to improve Arizona.
Back in August, she led the Pledge of Allegiance at the Democratic National Convention.
As the Founder of the HEART (Happy Equine Acres Rescue and Therapy) of Tucson, Judy Glore rescues and looks after horses in need.
This year she was diagnosed with lung cancer, but she continues to take care of her horses and they continue giving her hope through her toughest challenge.
"They are the reason I get up and come out here and I keep going," Glore told 9 On Your Side. "I see the fighting that they've been through way more than me or a lot of us, so if they can do it, I can do it."
Nine on Your Side recently introduced you to Hannah and Candace. They have been friends since high school. During freshman year of college, Candace showed signs of kidney failure. Not only did Hannah step up to take Candace to the emergency room, it turned out she was the perfect match for an organ donation.
"I had faith that I would be a cross match but then to find out test by test that it was perfect," Hannah said. "It was just a confirmation from God that it was supposed to happen that way."
The next person on GMT's Nice List is helping spread the holiday cheer. Retired Air Force veteran Sammy Eggerman collects scraps of wood at the University of Arizona and turns them into carefully crafted home made toys.
"The time's free, the wood's free so let's put it together and turn something that's a waste into a useful product for people who need things," Eggerman said.
Eggerman built about 160 toys that he and his wife donated to the Marine Corps Toys for Tots.
After 11 months apart, military families in Southern Arizona reunited just in time for Christmas. 9 On Your Side was there as soldiers from the "11th Theater Tactical Signal Brigade," stationed at Ft. Huachuca, returned home from Afghanistan.
9 On Your Side's friends at the Bobby Rich Morning Mix show on 94.9 MIX FM feel they have an obligation to the Tucson Community.
"We feel that we owe it to our listeners," Bobby Rich said. "They support us by listening to us on the radio and this is one of our ways of giving back."
Earlier this month, Rich, Mrs. Grant and Greg Curtis teamed up with Tucson Medical Center. They hit the airwaves as part of the Children's Miracle Network "Radiothon."
"And in the end, over $208,000 was raised, all staying right here in Southern Arizona for TMC for children," Rich said.
His name is synonymous with car dealerships in Tucson, but his business success has allowed him to give back to the community. For his generosity supporting education in Tucson, Raytheon honored Jim Click with the Spirit of Education Award.
"If it weren't for the customers in Tucson, the people who have done business with our company, I wouldn't be able to do what I can," Click said. "I'm eternally grateful to Tucson."
A 9 On Your Side viewer nominated the final person on GMT's Nice List. Ed Klein has worked at Cavett Elementary School for more than forty years. First, as a teacher.
"I retired in 2001 and came back the next day as a volunteer because I became tired of eating cookies and watching TV and I missed the children," Klein told 9 On Your Side.
While he's touched the lives of students for decades, the faculty appreciates all he does, from watering plants, to running the copy machine to opening the building in the morning.
"There's some recognition that's been long overdue for him," Cavett teacher Patrick Brennan said. "It's going to be easier to probably tell you what he doesn't do, because he does everything for us."
"When we did our grade school yearbook, what's your goal in life, and my goal was to be a primary elementary teacher," Klein said.