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Palin tours Operation Christmas Child charity

  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/12/06/22/05/GD69X.Em.138.jpeg|316
    TODD SUMLIN - tsumlin@charlotteobserver.com
    Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin speaks to the crowd at the Operation Christmas Child celebration Friday. Thousands of volunteers are packing more than 2 million shoebox gifts at the south Charlotte warehouse to distribute to children around the world.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/12/06/22/05/zEC6Y.Em.138.jpeg|202
    TODD SUMLIN - tsumlin@charlotteobserver.com
    Wayne Golas moves a boxes full of shoebox gifts down the line at the Operation Christmas Child warehouse in south Charlotte Friday, December 6, 2013. Thousands of volunteers are packing more than 2 million shoebox gifts at the Charlotte warehouse to distribute to children around the world.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/12/06/22/05/16qBkD.Em.138.jpeg|222
    PHOTOS BY TODD SUMLIN - tsumlin@charlotteobserver.com
    Dani Garza moves a box filled with shoebox gifts down the line at the Operation Christmas Child warehouse in south Charlotte Friday. Thousands of volunteers are packing more than 2 million shoebox gifts at the Charlotte warehouse to distribute to children around the world.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2013/12/06/22/05/19uWnd.Em.138.jpeg|186
    TODD SUMLIN - tsumlin@charlotteobserver.com
    The Tommy Coombs Band performs at the Operation Christmas Child celebration in south Charlotte Friday, December 6, 2013. Thousands of volunteers are packing more than 2 million shoebox gifts at the Charlotte warehouse to distribute to children around the world.

Rick Rothacker

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on Friday toured the Charlotte processing center for Operation Christmas Child, the Samaritan’s Purse charity that ships shoe boxes packed with gifts to kids around the world each year.

Palin, friends with Samaritan’s Purse CEO Franklin Graham, contributed her own shoe box, which included a Husky stuffed animal.

“I thought, ‘How about some moose chili or some caribou jerky?’ But that doesn’t travel too well,” Palin joked before a welcoming audience of volunteers gathered at the center off Nations Ford Road.

Operation Christmas Child ships nearly 10 million boxes to needy children each year, about 2 million of which are prepared by volunteers in Charlotte. Gov. Pat McCrory also joined Graham at the event.

Palin was in town for a book signing earlier in the day at the Billy Graham Library, and just last month she attended a 95th birthday party for Billy Graham, Franklin’s father, who was hospitalized recently with respiratory problems.

“You’re always concerned when someone that age is sick,” Franklin Graham told reporters. “His vitals are good. I know that he would appreciate your prayers.”

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