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Three more gold coins found in Salvation Army kettles

Three gold coins valued $1536 were dropped familiar red kettles between Dec. 6 Dec. 9 Walmart Round Lake Beach Route

Three gold coins valued at $1,536 were dropped in the familiar red kettles between Dec. 6 and Dec. 9 at the Walmart in Round Lake Beach on Route 83 and the Jewel food store in Grayslake on Belvidere Road. | File photo

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Updated: February 12, 2014 3:36AM



Christmas is turning golden for The Salvation Army in Lake County as more gold coins valued at over $1,500 were dropped in kettles recently, bringing the total to over $8,500.

The latest three gold coins valued at $1,536 were dropped in the familiar red kettles between Dec. 6 and Dec. 9 at the Walmart in Round Lake Beach on Route 83 and the Jewel food store in Grayslake on Belvidere Road. Both were South African Krugerrands and valued at about $128 each. On Dec. 9, a one-ounce Double Eagle gold coin worth approximately $1,280 was found wrapped in a $20 bill in the kettle at the The Salvation Army Waukegan Corps Community Center on Green Bay Road.

“Someone placed it in our mailbox,” said Major William Holman of The Salvation Army Waukegan Corps. “Everyone in the program is appreciative of the secret donors,” he said.

The annual kettle effort, which includes 72 in Lake County, was set back a little by the late Thanksgiving. “Please be generous to help the needy people in this county,” said Holman.

“We would be on track with last year if we had started earlier,” said Holman. Two years ago was the golden year for gold coins in Lake County when anonymous donors dropped $14,000 worth of coins in the kettles.

The latest three gold coins join the nine gold coins found last week, bringing the cumulative total of gold coins found in Lake County kettles to 12.

Five $50 1-ounce gold coins, valued at approximately $6,500, were dropped into the same Salvation Army Red Kettle between Wednesday, Dec. 4, and Thursday, Dec. 5 at a Walmart in Lake Zurich on Rand Road; and four 1/10-ounce Double Eagle gold coins, valued at approximately $497.56, were dropped in kettles at Jewels in Grayslake, Round Lake Beach and Waukegan.

The cumulative value of the 12 gold coins combined is approximately $8,533.56.

The Salvation Army has received more than $4 million in donations so far this season toward its Red Kettle Campaign, or 31 percent of its $13 million goal. Donations are down by about 4 percent overall compared to this time last year, largely due to the shorter holiday season.

A bright spot in the campaign is the rise of online red kettle donations, which have increased by about 270 percent, as more people turn to social media to sponsor their own online red kettles.

The familiar Red Kettles will disappear from the streets on Dec. 24. However, the Red Kettle campaign will continue through Jan. 31, 2014.

The Salvation Army Metropolitan Division serves people in need in Greater Chicago, northern Illinois and northwestern Indiana. For more information or to donate, sponsor an online red kettle or volunteer, visit www.salarmychicago.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-825-2769).



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