9-year-old collects pennies, food for Merrill tornado victims - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

9-year-old collects pennies, food for Merrill tornado victims

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MEDFORD (WAOW) -- Tornado relief efforts have spread across our area almost as quickly as the storms did. One Medford girl decided to try to make a big difference even from miles away.

When 9-year old Jayda Meyer heard about the storms that struck Merrill earlier this month, she wanted to do something to help.

"I heard this commercial on the radio saying that Merrill got hit by a tornado and I felt bad for them," said Jayda.

Jayda said she's been to Merrill before, but the Medford Elementary School fourth grader figured, a penny saved could be a penny earned for Merrill tornado victims.

"When I heard it, I'm like, mom, can we do a food and penny drive for Merrill?" said Jayda.

Her mom said yes, so the pair got to work decorating plastic tubs and passing them out to a bunch of businesses around town.

"It's pretty cool that so many got involved with this and a lot of them have been just so proud of Jayda for pulling this off and making it work," said Jayda's mom, Jessica Meyer.

From Bogey's on Main to BB's Aquatics down the street, the penny drive turned into a community effort. Plus, Jayda brought a bucket into each grade level in the elementary school to collect donations there.

Jayda's week-long effort continues at the elementary, with food and money ready to take to Merrill. The project is still in the works for this little leader with a big heart.

"For her to think of this was just astonishing and we couldn't be more proud of her," said Jessica.

People can still donate non-perishable food or money at a number of businesses in Medford through the end of next week, like at Schierl Tire, Soul, Bogey's or BB Aquatics.

The following businesses will also have collection containers: Medford Cafe, Northland Outlet, Holiday gas station, Hardware Hank, Happy Joes, Petersons Satellite and Verizon, Pennzoil Oil Exchange, Value Rite, Cookie Jar, Ben Franklin, Stetsonville Oil, Stramas, Thomas Flora and Shanes Outfitters.

Proceeds will go to the St. Vincent De Paul Church and the Merrill Chamber of Commerce.

For more information about Jayda's penny drive, click here for a link to the Facebook page.

Online Reporter: Anna Carrera

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