North Texas

Arlington GM Employees Donate $113,000 Worth of Toys to Deserving Families

Most days, General Motors' Arlington Assembly Plant is focused on producing some of the world's favorite full-size SUVs. But during the holiday season, the employees also make it a point to churn out happy memories for families who might not otherwise get them.

One of the little girls who was surprised Friday was Layla, and as far as she could tell she and her family got to spend their Friday inside Santa's workshop.

The walls were lined with endless rows of toys. Santa's helpers brought her and her cousins cookies. She even got some quality one-on-one time with the jolly elf himself.

"Her face just lit up like it was Christmas," said her mom Hailey Pena. "Seeing that and just seeing their faces, it was a good experience for me."

Turns out, they were actually at a factory that makes SUVs – and from time-to-time churns out Christmas wishes for families like them.

"I thank them and I give them props for what they did today," said Pena.

Pena is single mom who could use a leg up during the holiday season. That's why GM invited her family and several others to come to their Arlington Assembly Plant and walk out with sacks full of toys.

"They got more gifts than they've ever got before," said Pena.

All year, GM employees donated parts of their paychecks so they could buy the toys. This year, they purchased more than $113,000 worth.

"They're willing to give," said Hector Mori, a GM employee and leader of the Toys for Kids drive. "There are some unfortunate families that don't have it as good as we do. They love giving."

All the toys that did not go home with families on Friday will be turned over to Mission Arlington, which will deliver them to more than 30,000 kids across the Metroplex.

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