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Salvation Army Trying to Rebound

TAMAQUA, Pa. — Officials at the Salvation Army in Tamaqua admit that the past several months have been rough. First, there was a fire there in May. Then o...

TAMAQUA, Pa. -- Officials at the Salvation Army in Tamaqua admit that the past several months have been rough.

First, there was a fire there in May. Then over the summer, one of its officers, Maj. Sharon Whispell, was charged with setting that fire, and for stealing from the Salvation Army.

Last week, she pleaded guilty to the theft charges.

"In light of everything that's happened, it hasn't been easy, but we are where we are. As we've said, we're sorry that some of the events that have been in the press and we participated in discovering and working with authorities, have happened, but it's in their hands," said Capt. John Luby.

Despite that, employees say they've been working diligently to strengthen their reputation and provide for the community, especially with the holidays right around the corner.

"We're here. We're not going away, and we're going to continue to do the very best that we can to provide at least as much, if not more, service and connection and commitment to this community," Luby said.

Tuesday was the start of registration for holiday assistance at the Salvation Army, which will run through Thursday. People in Tamaqua can sign up for the Thanksgiving and Christmas meal distribution as well as a present giveaway.

"On Thanksgiving Day, we will serve between 200 and 300 people, a full-blown Thanksgiving meal," Luby said.

The Salvation Army adds that signups are down by about 30 people, but you still have until Thursday to sign up.