ABINGDON,Va. — Food City is gearing up to host the 13th annual Johnia Berry Toy Drive, which will benefit several local agencies.

This will be the 12th year the grocery store chain has hosted the drive, which kicks off Monday and runs through Dec. 3. There will be collection containers at area Food City locations throughout the Tri-Cities, according to a news release.

“Johnia was extremely passionate about helping children, and Food City is proud to be part of the annual Johnia Berry Toy Drive, which donates thousands of toys to needy children in our area each year,” said Steve Smith, Food City president and CEO.

The toys will be distributed on Dec. 6, the anniversary of the murder of Berry, a Bristol native who was stabbed to death in Knoxville in 2004.

Last year, more than 3,000 toys were distributed across the region, according to the toy drive’s website. The toys donated should be new and unwrapped for children up to the age of 14.

The Berry family has selected the following local agencies to receive the toys: Haven of Mercy; Tri-State Children’s Home; Safe Passage Women’s Shelter; Community Help Center of Northeast Tennessee; Cumberland Mountain Community Services of Cedar Bluff, Virginia; East Tennessee State University’s Little Bucs; HOPE Center of Greeneville, Tennessee; local schools in both Virginia and Tennessee; and others.

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