Store Manager Who Received Salvation Army Help As A Child Hosts Angel Tree Fundraiser

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – The General Manager of the Signal Mountain Walmart knows what it means to struggle.

“We had some pretty lean years growing up,” says Daniel Casillas who is the General Manager of the Walmart Supercenter on Signal Mountain Blvd. The youngest of four children to a single mom, Casillas says they often went without.

“There were times when we did not, Mom did not have the ability to go out and buy gifts for us.”

Casillas and his siblings were beneficiaries of the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program. He said though times were lean, his mother always provided for their needs.

“We were young enough, that we didn’t know any better. We may not have had money, but we had a lot of love,” says Casillas.

Casillas says he started working at Walmart when he was 19, making minimum wage. Twenty years later, he’s running his own store and at Christmas time, he gets to host his own Salvation Army Angel Tree.

“It’s something that I’m very, very passionate about, being a recipient and now running a facility where I’m able to have something like this out and educate our customers on the need for it and who it impacts.”

The program directly impacts children 12 and under and adults over 60 who find themselves in need. The list has “needs” and “wishes” and can include things like winter coats, underwear and blankets or bicycles, dolls and blenders. Shoppers can find angels to adopt on trees at the Northgate and Hamilton Place Mall, surrounding Walmarts and through Amazon.

Details to adopt an angel are found at CSArmy.org.

“Our children and our elderly folks in the community, what better charity is there to really get behind and help.”

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News