|Arnoldsburg Elementary students got a surprise of a lifetime Thursday. |
Not only did they get to meet Geoffrey the Giraffe, they also brought home something extra special in their backpacks.
One 5-year-old Arnoldsburg student made it all possible.
Student Brantley Smith, made a special connection with the Toys "R" Us CEO David Brandon last week, when he met Brantley Smith with actress Jennifer Garner in new York.
READ ORIGINAL STORY: ARNOLDSBURG FAMILY PRESENTS AWARD TO TOYS"R"US AT 4TH ANNUAL SAVE THE CHILDREN ILLUMINATION GALA - Hosted By "Mountain State" Native Jennifer Garner
"The kids are going to be so excited and Brantely is going to be excited," said Principal Charles Thomas.
Thomas played a message from Toys "R" Us' CEO David Brandon.
Students thought all of it was for Brantley until teachers and Toys "R" Us employees moved a wall to reveal a pile of toys.
Brantley had joined Jennifer Garner on stage in New York to announce an award for the Save the Children Illumination Gala.
Save the Children has been working closely with Calhoun County Schools to improve literacy and help with early education. Brantley's family took advantage of the early steps program.
Cathryn Miller, Early Education Program Specialist with Save The Children said they've been working closely with the county for the last three year.
"The Early Steps Program goes out into the community and serves families within their home. And these are families from prebirth up to the age of three and really work to make sure parents understand their child's development so They're ready and they are on track with the rest of their more affluent peers," Miller said.
Brantley's story moved the CEO so much, he wanted to do more. so he rewarded a leading example of Save the Children in action, to Brantley and his school.
"Showing kids that there are more than just teachers here. There is a community and there is a world, save the children and toys r us that care for them and want to see them succeed," said Jeannie Bennett, Chief Executive of Student Services in Calhoun County.
Toys were divided up by age group and gender. Every student got to take home one Toys "R" Us toy.