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Christmas spirit lives – and drives

By: Staff report
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Larry Norris was a member of the Auburn 49er Lions Club. He really enjoyed the Christmas season, when he would dress up as Santa Claus and, along with his wife, dressed as Mrs. Claus, visit convalescent homes and the Auburn Faith Hospital. He carried with him two bags of candy, one regular and the other, sugar-free. He would make the rounds with a nurse who would tell him from which bag the patient could sample. Today, decades later, the Larry Norris Project continues to be held in his honor. Over time, it has evolved. Again this year, Auburn 49er Lion Kelly Post worked with the Salvation Army to select families who meet the criteria to participate in this event. The families were notified and asked to provide a Christmas wish list for each child. For each family, a 49er Lion took the list and tried to fill it. The gifts were wrapped. Candy canes were collected. On Saturday, Dec. 17, Santa Claus, aka Dave Johnson, riding in a colorfully decorated convertible, made his way to four Auburn family homes to deliver Christmas gifts and other goodies to the children of these households. Santa’s elves, being busy at the North Pole, could not attend, so Santa took with him some Auburn 49er Lions. The gifts were delivered, pictures were taken and the Lions attempted a rendition of, “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” Christmas is the season of sharing. The Auburn 49er Lions are happy to continue the Christmas spirit of the late Larry Norris. One can only hope it will live on in the hearts of us all. To learn more about the activities of the Auburn 49er Lions club, email auburn49erlions@ gmail.com.