FedEx Helps VFW Deliver a Doll of a Christmas Present

Regardless of what branch of the military one joins, the bond of serving one’s country unites millions of people across the U.S. despite background, race and gender. It’s what led Air Force veteran and FedEx Ground Service Manager Scott Barber in Tampa, Fla., to help a member of the Army more than 1,000 miles away in Sheldon, New York.

Last year, Army Staff Sgt. Robert Toland was stationed in Germany when he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. A young man in his 30s, Robert returned home with his wife and three little girls to western New York to get medical treatment in the hopes of extending his life.

As junior vice commander of Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 10094 in Indian Rocks, Fla., Scott first heard of Robert’s dire medical situation when a fellow serviceman in New York asked for assistance to send the Toland family on a dream vacation to Disney World. 

Scott and members of the VFW and American Legion raised $2,000, enough for the Tolands to enjoy a worry-free vacation in Orlando this past November. “I enjoyed my time in the service and use the VFW to continue to help future and current veterans like Robert,” commented Scott.

As peak approached, Scott’s responsibility of getting packages to customers in time for the holidays expanded to include shipping a very large, custom-made doll house to the three young daughters of Robert. Wanting to provide the girls with a special Christmas present, a member of Scott’s VFW donated the doll house, which he made years ago for his own daughters. 

The challenge? The doll house and the pallet it was on weighed nearly 1,500 lbs. 

Too large to put through the FedEx Ground network, Lisa Daniel, sr. communications specialist, FedEx Services, “knew that it would take an Express miracle to get it there by Christmas.” 

With no time to spare, Scott had the doll house brought to the FedEx Express ramp in Tampa on December 23. On Christmas morning, the doll house was delivered to the Toland girls.

Scott, who credits his military experience for preparing him for a successful career at FedEx Ground, was grateful for the assistance. “In the past ten years, FedEx has allowed me to help our veterans by being understanding and supportive if I need to go to a ceremony or function. It shows they care about our troops and their families. And the doll house once again proves this point.”