Outrage at Toys For Tots

, Written by Roma Villavicencio, Posted: Mon, December 30 2013 at 6:10 PM, Updated: Mon, December 30 2013 at 6:38 PM

A  follow up to a story you first saw on NBC 5 News last Monday.

After you, our viewers reached out to help hundreds of area kids, who missed out on the Toys For Tots original distribution.

Many of you donated your time to volunteer. Hundreds more donated toys for a second distribution this weekend. But the event quickly turned sour for some.

What was supposed to be a day of celebration, picking up toys for kids who otherwise wouldn't have had them, turned controversial and highly upsetting for some.

"There was this gentlemen that was there that was very rude, he didn't want people to be speaking in Spanish," said Lurdes Contreras.

Contreras was one of many taken aback after Toys for Tots volunteer organizer Clay Ver Bryck Sr.'s harsh words.

"We don't talk it in this area, if you don't want us to know what your saying...than i'm sorry," said Bryck.

Ver Bryck is a marine vet who volunteered to run this years toy drive. He made it plainly clear, speaking Spanish was not allowed at his event.

"I served my country for that right," said Bryck.

Bert Plannette, the Commandant of the Rogue Valley Marine Corps League says Ver Bryck was out of line.

"I'm still trying to pick my jaw up off the table its just unbelievable that somebody would do something like that," said Plannette.

He says the marines, who've run Toys For Tots for decades doesn't tolerate this type of conduct.

"They could have been German kids or Latino kids or Italian whatever but wherever they're from we could care less we just want to give toys to the kids," continued Plannette.

Plannette says the Marine Corps national organization in Virginia chooses who runs their local events.

"I don't understand why he was chosen he's not the person that should be handling it," said Contreras.

Nevertheless, Plannette Apologized to any who may have been offended by Ver Bryck's choice of words.

"I apologize to those children who heard those comments," said Plannette.

Contreras says she won't seek assistance from toys for tots next year.

"I felt bad after I got it I mean I just felt like I wanted to go and throw that toy in front of that gentlemen," said Contreras.

But she is considering volunteering as a translator to make sure nothing like this ever happens again.

NBC 5 did try to reach out to the national Marine Toys For Tots Foundation in Quantico, Virginia.

They said they wouldn't be available for comment until later this week.

What do you think? Sound off on our Facebook page and on Twitter, or leave a comment below.

About the Author

Roma Villavicencio

NBC5 News reporter Roma Villavicencio comes from Southern California where she reported for Garden Grove TV Channel 3.

She is a graduate of the journalism/communications program at Cal State Fullerton.

Roma is very proud of her Mexican heritage. She is bi-lingual and looks forward to serving our Hispanic community.

She loves food, music and the San Francisco Giants. She lives by the slogan “viva la vida!”

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