ROXBURY, NJ - Before 9-year-old Wyatt Glasser's grandfather died, he wrote a letter to the youngster urging him to embrace generosity. Last week, the boy followed that advice by tapping into his piggy bank to buy supplies for the Roxbury Social Services Food Pantry.
The Kennedy School fourth grader's mother, Liza Nechamkin Glasser, said her son not only spent $10 of his savings on groceries, but also took the time to help put the items on the Food Pantry's shelves.
"Wyatt recently lost his grandfather, my dad, Jerry Nechamkin," said Glasser, a Succasunna resident. She said her father lived in Jefferson and was a long-time, active Rotarian who "donated endless hours helping others."
Before Nechamkin died, he penned a note to his grandson, said Glasser. "He left Wyatt a letter encouraging him to `always help people' and always 'pay it forward,'" she said.
Carrying some of the money Wyatt collected as gifts, or by doing "little jobs when he is off from school," Glasser and her son went grocery shopping on Nov. 22 and then headed to the Food Bank, situated at the Roxbury Social Services office near Horseshoe Lake in Succasunna.
"When we arrived to deliver the food we bought, Shirley Bauer - a regular volunteer and family friend - greeted Wyatt and invited him to help her shelve the food donations," Glasser said. "He enthusiastically went to work helping to put away all the food."
Roxbury Social Services Director Janet Wald "commended his actions and re-enforced the message he was learning by having this experience," Glasser said, adding that both she and the Social Services staff hope the boy's actions "inspire others" to do the same. "This is a new tradition for Wyatt and I that we will do each year the day before Thanksgiving, and several times a year after, in honor of my father," Glasser said.
It wasn't the first time Wyatt demonstrated generosity. He and a friend, Tyler Curtis, last year donated to Social Services two SUVs worth of food they gathered at a joint birthday party.