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Frances Trexler gives to Christmas Happiness in honor of late husband, Col. Tommy Trexler

Frances Trexler’s husband, the late Col. Tommy Trexler, held organizations that gave to children close to his heart. He and his first wife adopted two teenage girls before she died. When Tommy died, Frances, continued raising those two girls.
On Tuesday, Frances gave to the Christmas Happiness Fund in honor of her husband, who died 19 years ago. The two had always given to the fund, which helps families buy Christmas gifts for their children, and so Frances has continued giving in his memory.
The Christmas Happiness contributions are collected at the Salisbury Post and listed in the paper each day. The Salvation Army of Rowan County distributes those funds. Families receive a $30 voucher to buy Christmas gifts for each child who qualifies.
Frances was a single mother, prior to her marriage to Tommy, working to make ends meet, but still found the money to feed other children.
She also gives to Nazareth Children’s Home and the Salvation Army of Rowan County.
Years ago when Nazareth Children’s Home allowed children to go home for two weeks, Frances said, she would regularly take in children during the holidays.
The one Christmas she told her children they would just have their family around the table, her son, hung his head and said he’d already had someone who wanted to stay.
Trexler said she has passed on those same loving values she and Tommy incorporated into their everyday lives to their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
The Trexlers were married for 10 years and the two gave to children’s organizations every year, Frances said.
“You have to have a special place in your heart to adopt two teens and raise them. We had an understanding that we would treat our children alike. We had a mixed family,” she said.
Tommy, who was a decorated war hero, served during the Korean War, was born and raised in Rowan County. Frances is also a Rowan native.
Frances said she’s blessed and wants to bless others.
She even dismisses gifts during the holidays from her family, instead inviting them to do something nice for someone else instead as a gift to her. The children and grandchildren write letters to Frances telling her of who they helped during the year and how they helped them. She reads the letters at Christmas.
The family has been writing Frances letters for 15 years and she’s saved every letter. She has six letters she is waiting to open on Dec. 25.
Frances said she’s taught her children “what Christmas is really about — it’s not collecting gifts, it’s giving and I’m so much happier if they do something for someone else.”
Bring Christmas Happiness contributions to the Salisbury Post, 131 W. Innes St., between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays or mail them to The Salisbury Post Christmas Happiness Fund, P.O. Box 4639, Salisbury, NC 28145-4639.
Make checks payable to the Christmas Happiness Fund and indicate how you wish your donations to be listed. Please write legibly to ensure that donations can be listed accurately.

Tuesday’s donations are:
In lieu of Christmas Cards by Rick and Carol Leonard $100
In honor of Denise Fink ,Lou Huyck and Janie Wise, Sunday School teachers of Faith Bible Class of Enon Baptist Church $75
In honor of our children Rob, Michael and Angie by Harry and Alice Waddell $50
In honor of our grandchildren, Jake, Joey, Hannah and Hunter by Harry and Alice Waddell$50
Anonymous $25
In loving memory of Rovie Williams by his Family $100
In memory of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Thompson $25
In honor of Harriet Fisher and Jim Earnhardt Sunday School Teachers for Brownie-Fisher Sunday School Class of St. Luke’s Reformed Church $30
In honor of Judy Lefler, Music Director at St. Luke’s Reformed Church $30
In memory of Carl M. Benfield, Glenn R. Hartzoge, Mary B. Snowberger and Louise B. Hartzoge by Tim and Marsha $75
Mr. Jerry Swink $30
Providence United Methodist Church Men’s Club $100
In honor of The Salisbury Post employees who continue to bring our community a wonderful paper $40
In memory of Col. Tommy Trexler by Frances Trexler $100
In memory of Arthur and Edna Pinkston by Dorothy Pinkston Atkinson $50
In memory of Howard and Doris Pinkston Groff by Dorothy Pinkston Atkinson $25
In honor of Ott and Julie Pinkston by Dorothy P. and Gene Atkinson $25
In honor of Barbara Casper Vogt by Dorothy P. and Gene Atkinson $25
In memory of Don Neff by Amy and Samantha Moir $50
In memory of Clem La Bonte, My Dad by Shelly Butgereit and Family $25
In Lieu of Christmas Cards by Gail and David Fisher $50
In memory of R. Gordon Senter, MD, our dear friend and mentor by Oak Hollow Staff $225
In loving memory of Bill and Billy Cohen by Ruby $200
The Steppin Out Social Club $25
BHS Class of ’55 Lunch Bunch $361
In memory of past members and in honor of current members of the Golden Rule Men’s Bible Class of the First United Methodist Church of Salisbury $100
In memory of Craig and Kevin Rufty by Bill and Bea Rufty.$50
In memory of Esther Morgan Fine, Buddy L. Catoe and Thomas and Linda Hill Morgan by John and Betty McHone $20
In memory of Coy and Ethel Cranford and Sheila Christie and in honor of Charles S. Spry by John and Betty McHone $20

Today’s Total $2,081
Running Total $12,467

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