They give the season reason: The people who go out of their way to make others’ lives brighter.
Since 1995, The Bee has spotlighted a handful of these stories. The 12 Faces of Christmas represent the thousands of residents who quietly contribute to the central San Joaquin Valley. They help us remember that the good people in our society substantially outnumber the bad.
While the few may wreak havoc at times, the many show the importance of neighborliness and kindness. They comfort the grieving and assist the downtrodden. The 12 Faces of Christmas report is a tribute to the best in our Valley.
For many, their caring for others has become a decades-long passion. These are people like Lynea Lattanzio, who turned a box full of kittens into 12 acres of rescued felines at Cathouse on the Kings. And Paul Copeland, who has kept Helping Our Own Destiny running for 20 years and has lofty plans coming to fruition.
Then there are the people just starting their adult lives but already making room for others. People like Ariana Martinez Lott and Kevin Lott, who are giving back to the Lowell neighborhood where they live. Phil Skei, pastor from On Ramps Covenant Church, says, “Community is really created by thousands of very small acts often by individuals and families. And there’s things that no one usually notices and there’s things that no one ever gets paid to do, but it’s the kind of thing that Kevin and Ariana exemplify.”