Fresno dental office sending Halloween candy to first responders and military

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A day after collecting candy, some Valley kids collected cold hard cash.

They saved their favorites at home and got paid for the rest.

"We just told them they could turn their candy in, earn money and they were pretty excited about that," says Jenae Diepersloot.

This week, Willow Dental on Willow near Herndon is paying $2 for a pound of candy - up to five pounds.

The candy will be sent to members of the military and first responders. It's a sweet deal for everyone.

"Because you get money, they don't have candy and they fight for our country, so I thought it'd be nice to send candy on them," Diepersloot said.

The kids also drew pictures and wrote heartfelt letters to service members.

Myla Demsley, her sister and her brother love Harry Potter but they also love to help others.

Giving up part of their Halloween stash was actually an easy decision.

"Because they serve our country and we should do something to show how much we appreciate it," Myla said.

Tracey Anderson says Willow Dental was able to bring back the candy buyback this year after the pandemic put a temporary halt to the program last year.

The candy is shipped out in care packages through Operation Gratitude and Move America Forward.

"We didn't have as many kids as I thought we would have this year," Anderson said.

Two years ago, 1,500 pounds of candy were collected.

Anderson hopes to top that number this week.
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