Two people receive Spirit of Beckley Award, thousands raised for YMCA youth programs

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BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — It was a big night in Beckley as the YMCA of Southern of West Virginia hosted its annual Spirit of Beckley Dinner on Monday, December 9.

The dinner celebrated the end of a three-week fundraising campaign for the YMCA’s youth programs. According to Jay Rist, the CEO of the YMCA, they broke a fundraising record.

“Our goal this year was $125,000. I’m proud to announce we’re at $145,000 this year,” Rist said.

The dinner also served as a way to recognize two men for the many contributions they made to southern West Virginia. Greg Darby and Cory Beasley were this year’s Spirit of Beckley Award recipients. They are the co-owners of Little General Stores. Rist said this award could not have gone to two more deserving men.

“Greg and Cory have been so supportive of the YMCA of Southern West Virginia, our community, our state. They’ve had such a tremendous impact,” Rist explained.

Both Darby and Beasely were appreciative of this recognition.

“We keep the money in southern West Virginia and West Virginia. We just like to help the communities. We have a saying in our company, ‘if we can, we should,'” Darby said.

“To be able to give back and help the folks in our communities and marketing areas is such a pleasure and such a joy,” Beasley explained.

WVU Head Basketball Coach Bob Huggins introduced Darby and Beasley at the dinner. He said both men continue to make the state a better place.

“Greg and Cory are, one, very dear friends, and two, people who make this state great. They’re involved in virtually everything. They’re certainly involved at the university and the basketball program. Anytime someone needs some help, they’re right there,” Huggins said.

All of the money was raised in Darby and Beasley’s honor during the three-week campaign.

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