Thieves Steal Salvation Army Donation Kettle - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Thieves Steal Salvation Army Donation Kettle

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It wouldn't feel like the holidays without the red Salvation Army kettles and bell ringers asking for donations, but a certain Grinch in North Carolina showed he was not in the holiday spirit by stealing the Salvation Army kettle.

James Griffin, a veteran bell ringer, mans the red kettle daily at the Hanes Mall in Winston-Salem. He's known for his upbeat personality.

"It's never too cold to do God's work. Ring ring, you have a nice day," Griffin said.

Not much can bring James down, which is why what happened Tuesday around 3pm was so shocking.

"So I had an elderly woman come out of a car she was getting dropped off she was with her stroller a walker, she had four grandkids with her so I escorted her through the double doors then the second set of doors I come back out the kettle was gone," Griffin said.

Turning around for a split second resulted in a missing kettle with all the money James had collected.

He immediately called the Salvation Army Office.

"As soon as it happened, I prayed for that individual cause I knew right there and then God was gonna have his increase because you can't stop God's work" Griffin said.

Major James Allison from the Salvation Army showed sympathy and was worried that there are others out there who might need this money as well.

"More importantly we're concerned about the person who took it because we're concerned obviously they had a need greater than our need," Allison said.

The Salvation Army filed a police report, but for Major Allison, he was concerned for James' morale, spending all day Tuesday in the cold and nothing to show for it.

But this slight damper wasn't able to dim James's smile and positive outlook.

"God forgives, God forgives, Merry Christmas," Griffin said.

The Belk Store plans to donate one hundred dollars to help cover the stolen kettle, also showing local residents this will not bring down their holiday cheer.

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