Alright, everyone knows I have a soft spot for my family. I also have a soft-spot for Boy Scouts since eveyone in my family is involved. I saw this story a few days ago, and had the usual reaction – 2 Boy Scouts and their Dads were robbed at gunpoint of $350 at their annual Christmas tree sale. This morning, the Cincinnati Enquirer has the… rest of the story:

Scouts learn of Christmas spiritOutpouring of support keeps tree sale on track
BY QUAN TRUONG AND JENNIFER BAKER | QTRUONG@ENQUIRER.COM AND JBAKER@ENQUIRER.COM

NORTH COLLEGE HILL – For every Grinch that tries to steal Christmas, there’s a whole community waiting to help.

That’s what members of a Boy Scout committee explained to members of Troop 393 after two Scouts and their fathers were robbed and assaulted at gunpoint while selling Christmas trees Monday night.

Soon after news of what happened broke, community members and business leaders rallied to help the Boy Scouts, offering words of support – and reaching into their wallets.

Less than a day after the robbery, droves of supporters showed up Tuesday night at Tom’s Drive Thru, at West Galbraith Road and Gilbert Avenue.

“The bah, humbug went right out the door,” Stone said.

On a good night, Scouts sell about 10 to 15 trees, Stone said. Tuesday, they sold 56 trees. And those who weren’t buying offered donations. One after another, people walked up to committee members and extended their hands, holding wads of bills.

Appalled by the story, a few businessmen also have stepped forward to help.

Joe French, a sales manager with OKI Systems in Evendale, heard the story and began collecting money in the office to help the boys. He plans to deliver the money Friday.

“This is just a gut-wrenching, heartbreaking story,” he said. “I’m really hoping and praying these kids will get well above and beyond what they lost.”

Phil Amrein of Amrein Diamonds in Colerain Township has offered to replace the $350 taken in the robbery, North College Hill police said. Shamrock Pools in North College Hill also has pledged to give money, Police Chief Paul Toth said. Amrein has been robbed five times, so he knows what it feels like to be victimized, Toth said.

“He wants to make sure the boys don’t do without,” Toth said. “For the low-life animals these criminals were, I still see the highest level of human coming through in these people stepping forward now to take care of these young boys.”

The three robbers were still at large late Tuesday.

They showed up about 8:30 p.m. Monday – one armed with a sawed-off shotgun, police said.

Two fathers and their sons, 13 and 11, were shoved to the ground and robbed at gunpoint. The adults and the 13-year-old also were punched. The 13-year-old was hit in the face.

The robbers ran off with $350 in cash that Troop 393 had raised by selling trees for $25 each

Troop members have operated the tree stand at least 20 years as one of their major fundraisers. They start selling the Saturday after every Thanksgiving until all the trees are sold.

The troop has never had a problem before and doesn’t plan on letting what happened shut down their annual tradition.

“This is a horrible experience for (John Jr.). He’s still frightened, and he watched his father, who is a mountain of a man, hit the ground,” Stone said. “But we’re teaching (the Scouts) that we’re stronger together, much like the knots they tie.”

Stone said committee members plan to rearrange staffing for the tree sales so that six to eight people will be there each night.

It is nice to see the Christmas spirit still going strong….

The whole story here.

Alright – I promise to get to some political stuff soon…. :)