Opal’s Spirit of Giving

Opal’s Spirit Shines Bright for Nursing Community Residents


Niles, OH – It all started when Trudie McCoy of North Jackson realized that many residents in her mother’s nursing home in Coshocton, Ohio did not receive visitors regularly, let alone at Christmas time. She made it her mission to spread joy and cheer through warmth by making handmade blankets for everyone living there. “I am by no means a seamstress,” Trudie said, “but every stitch was done with love.”

A few years later Trudie used her antique store as the headquarters for “Opal’s Spirit of Giving,” a project involving local businesses, community members and area nursing homes. “Shepherd of the Valley has been involved with the project since Trudie started it locally. In fact Trudie and I are the ones that came up with the title.  This year Trudie included hand-stitched blankets which added a really special touch because we know how passionate she is about this program,” stated Kristen Taylor, Marketing and Admissions Director for Shepherd of the Valley – Niles. “I am lucky enough to play Santa’s elf and distribute the gifts to everyone and to see just how excited and more importantly appreciative they are.”

Those interested in participating pull a gift tag off of a Christmas tree with the first name of a resident and items suitable for purchase. Trudie collects them in her antique shop and schedules pick-up times with each nursing community involved with the project.

For additional information please contact Kristen Taylor at 330-544-0771 ext. 2817 or email KristenT@shepherdofthevalley.com.