Ross: Donating to Treehouse a great way to spread Holiday Magic

Dec 13, 2023, 11:00 AM | Updated: 11:22 am

Holiday Magic...

Join KIRO Newsradio in supporting thousands of foster children in Washington state through Treehouse. (KIRO Newsradio/Treehouse)

(KIRO Newsradio/Treehouse)

In the 35 years since KIRO Newsradio started raising money for Treehouse, families have changed a lot. But what hasn’t changed – is the necessity of having one.

My own childhood was about as stable as it gets. Two parents, four children; parents stayed married until Dad passed away in the house they bought in 1948. It began as a four-room cabin surrounded by cornfields in farm country north of New York City. By the time I left, it had eight rooms and was surrounded by subdivisions.

Support Treehouse through Holiday Magic

Dad worked in the advertising business, Mom stayed at home. We had a tennis court in the backyard, and our next door neighbor was a corporate CEO with a big family and a swimming pool that we could use any time.

So a rough neighborhood, it was not.

Our family did have its vices – Dad smoked cigarettes, and there was alcohol, mostly gin and tonics, but as for hard drugs and crime – that was miles away in big bad New York City.

And with so many families leaving the city, our school district was constantly building schools, so almost every school I attended was brand new. Our high school even had a cable TV studio for the morning homeroom show. And guess who ended up doing commentaries until he was told to stick to the script?

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And when school was out in the summer – the family jumped into a car and drove north on a brand new interstate highway to the Adirondacks where dad had bought a cottage on Lake Placid.

You get the picture? It’s not like we were the Rockefellers, but the only adversity I faced as a child was riding in a car without seat belts, and inhaling fumes from the leaded gas. Also, I was a terrible water skier.

But for me — that’s why Treehouse.

Any success I’ve had is because my family bought me a first-class ticket on a non-stop trip through childhood. And when I hear about so many kids who’ve basically had to hitchhike through life, there’s a little voice that tells me that’s not right.

So, that’s why we signed up for regular monthly donations. And I hope some of you will do the same. Especially if you grew up with a tennis court.

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News with Dave Ross and Colleen O’Brien weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Newsradio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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