Harvey Ancel

1:40 PM, Oct 15, 2010   |    comments
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At 93, Ancel sorts, packs and mails boxes of books each week to underprivileged kids in hopes of sparking an interest in learning and reading.

"A mind grows when it is stimulated," Ancel said.

Ancel fills boxes with books he's collected from libraries, bookstores and friends.

The boxes of books have been sent to local school districts as far away as the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

"I've collected over a hundred thousand [books] easily," Ancel said.

Ancel graduated from the University of Chicago in 1939 with a degree in Sociology.

He worked at Fitzsimons Army Medical Center in the Civilian Personnel Office. From 1993 to 2006 he volunteered with Littleton Public Schools to teach kids science, history and art and reading. He says books can provide the building blocks of education and life.

"Every professional trade requires knowledge of vocabulary, and if you do not have it, you're missing out on the first step," Ancel said.

Ancel's goal is to make sure children, regardless of their social situation, understand that there are possibilities in life and that books can show them the way.

"What a wonderful thing to try to stimulate a mind that will perhaps change a life," Ancel said.

Ancel says his lessons and distributing books has changed his life as well. However, he realizes at his age those chapters in his life will likely close soon.

"I'll do it as long as I can do it," Ancel said.

He just hopes his stories and the books he sends will help kids look at the pages of their own lives, well after the story of his life is written.

If you know of an outstanding volunteer in your community, you can nominate them for the 9Who Cares Award on the Community page.

(KUSA-TV © 2010 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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