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Salvation Army donations guarantee smile in return
Jeremiah Pugh, 60, rings the Salvation Army bell at Kroger in Rincon on Nov. 21. He has also served the Salvation Army in California and Montana. - photo by Mark Lastinger/staff

RINCON — Jeremiah Pugh gives something every time he receives a donation for the Salvation Army — a big smile a hearty “thank you.”

Pugh, 60, manned the Salvation Army’s familiar red kettle at Kroger for a few days leading up to Thanksgiving.

“If you can’t do this with a smile, there ain’t no need in doing it,” Pugh said.

Pugh, who previously manned the Salvation Army’s familiar red kettles in California and Montana, said attitude is everything.

“It’s the way you respond to (potential donors),” Pugh said. “A person can be feeling bad, but if you say, ‘Hey, how you doing?,’ it can bring joy to them. That’s what it’s all about — having joy for life.”

Pugh, who lives at the Salvation Army in Savannah, braves long hours and occasional bouts of inclement weather.
“It’s a job now, but you’ve got to be willing to do it,”
he said. “It’s not just for yourself. You’ve got to have the love of God in you.
“A lot of people wouldn’t stand out here and do it like I do, but it’s not a problem when you have the love of God in you.”
Pugh said his smile almost always gets one in return.
“If you speak to people and smile, they will donate,” he said.
See the Nov. 29 edition of the Effingham Herald for more details.