PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Black Friday is known as an all-day shopping frenzy.

But it’s also the day that brings out the familiar red kettles of the Salvation Army.

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Salvation Army Lt. Kennneth Cleveland has set up donation spots throughout the North Hills of Pittsburgh.

“The need is not just during the holiday or Christmas season,” he says. “The need is really all year long, as far as helping with utilities, and mercy disasters, and people who need shelters.”

Helen Williams works the kettle at the JCPenneys store in Ross Park Mall. Her warm greeting brings out the best in people on a hectic day of shopping.

One of those putting money into the kettle is 12-year-old Ashlyn Pfeuffer, who says, “My great grandfather said never to pass them up, because they were good to him when he was in the Air Force.”

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Her grandmother, Linda Walter, agrees.

“You’re giving to people who don’t have what we have,” she said. “They’re less fortunate. They’re not out here today shopping like we are.”

Helen Williams says she was going through a rough patch about 12 years ago. The Salvation Army helped her out, and she’s been paying it back ever since.

“They helped me turn my life around,” she recalls. “They gave me a lot of stuff. Food, clothes, I got shelter. I mean, I had the works. And it was wonderful. And they help everybody. I’m just paying back.”


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