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Dexton McKinney deemed “Hero of the Year”

October 25, 2017
BY LAUREN MATTHEWS - Editor (lmatthews@wetzelchronicle.com) , Wetzel Chronicle

Those driving by Magnolia High School on Oct. 12 might have been curious as to why there were several motorcycles parked outside of the school. There was actually a very good reason for the congregation of bikes, as something very special was happening inside the school. Dexton McKinney, a junior, was being named Hoagy's Heroes "Hero Of The Year."

It is a worthy title for McKinney, who was on the front page of the Wetzel Chronicle in August 2017.

McKinney, of Proctor, collects aluminum pop tabs for sick children. He is so serious about his endeavor that he has named his cause "Tabs for Tomorrow."

Article Photos

Robert “Hoagy” Carmichael and Dexton McKinney embrace, after McKinney is named Hoagy’s Heroes’ Hero of the Year.
Photo Provided

Dexton has passed his tabs on to Hoagy's Heroes, located in Glen Dale, W.Va. Hoagy's Heroes, operated under President Robert "Hoagy" Carmichael, sponsors motorcycle events for the purpose of raising money for the benefit of selected charitable causes. Hoagy's Heroes also collects can tabs and donates them to a charity that can use the aluminum tabs for profit. One of Hoagy's causes is Ronald McDonald House Charities in Morgantown, W.Va. This charity's mission is to provide "a "home-away-from-home" for families of critically ill children being treated at area medical facilities."

Ronald McDonald House Charities recycles collected pop tabs to further support services. Those tabs add up as well. In 2014, RMHC Morgantown made $4,400 from recycled pop tabs.

Since discovering that tabs can be used to help the less fortunate, Dexton has been pulling tabs ever since. His dad, Jim, has estimated that Dexton has probably spent around 20 hours a week pulling tabs off of cans. Yet, to Dexton, "It takes one second to pull a tab." This one tab could very well mean "A Child's Tomorrow."

Dexton has encouraged others to join his efforts. He has a Facebook page called "Tabs for tomorrow" and has received tabs from individuals in several different states. In the Chronicle's August article concerning Dexton, it was reported that he had collected approximately 25 gallons of tabs. Since the interview, Dexton gathered another 30 gallons.

Dexton makes sure these supporters know they are appreciated. His dad, Jim, previously explained that Dexton sends a "Thank You" card to each and every person who mails tabs. He also sponsors contests, via his Facebook page, encouraging people to send in more tabs. For instance, Dexton has specially designed t-shirts and can koozies promoting "Tabs For Tomorrow." Supporters also have the opportunity to be entered into drawings for prizes.

Hoagy's Heroes has previously recognized Dexton's efforts, inviting Dexton to be an honorary member of its organization. Now, the organization has further recognized Dexton by bestowing him with Hoagy's "Hero of the Year" award.

Dexton his modest about his award. He noted, "I would really like to thank each and everyone who is helping me reach my goal to help give the kids a brighter and healthier future."

Those interested in helping Dexton with his tab-collection goals, are encouraged to visit his Facebook page "Tabs for tomorrow," or call Dexton at 304-815-8948. Businesses are encouraged to set out a tab-collection container in break rooms. Also, Jim reminds that tabs can be pulled from a variety of cans, not just pop cans.

 
 
 

 

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