Clifton Forge woman wins final Hometown Holiday Helpers honor for 2021

Published: Dec. 22, 2021 at 4:38 PM EST
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CLIFTON FORGE, Va. (WDBJ) - WDBJ7 received hundreds of submissions for Hometown Holiday Helpers this year, and like every year, it keeps getting tougher. For the final selection, Vicky Wilmer from Clifton Forge was selected.

“My Christmas has been made! I might be able to afford a new pair of socks,” proclaimed Vicky when we called to inform her she had won the $700 in gift cards.

Vicky lives in Clifton Forge with her husband Steve. They’ve been together over 30 years and celebrated 21 years of marriage earlier this month. She never wavers to go out of her way to make the holidays brighter for a family in need.

“A spark of hope goes a long way. You could have three bad days but if somebody gives you a spark of hope, you want to go again,” said Wilmer.

Over the past decade, both have battled different health issues. Most recently she pulled a tendon in her achilleas while Steve, a Vietnam veteran, requires several trips to and from Salem to the VA with kidney issues.

Wilmer explained the back-and-forth process to the Salem VA, “Sometimes it can be four or five times a month. Sometimes it can be two or three times a week; then we get a little break. It just depends on what’s going on at the moment.”

She added, “We just take care of each other. That’s what it’s meant to be, family taking care of your family and we can help somebody else.”

Vicky has been involved with volunteer work most her life. She and ‘her elves’, a group of 10 or so volunteers from Clifton Forge and beyond, have done it for the better part of a decade. Each August, they pick families to help and collect gifts leading up to the big day. For her, it’s about making a child smile.

“If you need help, I’ll try my best. That piece of hope I think is worth millions and a twinkle in a little kid’s eye for Christmas,” said Wilmer.

Vicky didn’t always have a magical Christmas, so this charity work hits home with her. She explained, “We had a big family when we grew up and our Christmas wasn’t big so I like to see kids get stuff for Christmas. My husband is the same way. If we can help somebody, if we got it or can come up with it.”

However, 2021 is different. Due to different health struggles challenging Vicky and other volunteers, they couldn’t help as many families, so someone stepped up to help Vicky by submitting her name into the Hometown Holiday Helpers contest.

Vicky plans to spend a little money on herself and her husband as well as providing a big Christmas dinner for her family.

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