Marilyn Jones and hats

Marilyn Jones poses with her hats, handmade creations she accumulates through the year for donation in December. Photo courtesy Jari Chidester

Ninety-year-old Marilyn Jones counts her five children, 30 grandchildren and 48 great-grandchildren as the best gifts in her life. Now, she feels, she wants to work on some gifts of her own.

Having learned to crochet at a young age from her mother and grandmothers, she has spoiled her grandchildren with handmade baby booties and sweaters. During the holiday season, she expanded her definition of family by crocheting hats to donate to local organizations. Since moving to the coast six years ago, she has donated hundreds of hats to Coastsiders.

“I had lived here for about two months and was thinking, ‘I’ve moved away from home, what do I do now?’” said Jones.

Before moving to the Coastside from Los Angeles, along with running a wedding catering business, Jones was an avid volunteer, working with the church, community and city. She proudly remembers having her photo in the newspaper once when she was honored as “Volunteer of the Year.”

“We were driving down the street and it was raining, and I saw this man. He wasn’t dressed very warmly, and he was just strolling along the street with no hat on, with his arms around himself, just trying to keep warm,” said Jones. “I looked at my daughter and I said, ‘I’m going to crochet hats for people.’ That’s how I got started.”

This year, Jones donated 125 hats to Coastside Hope and Ayudando Latinos a Soñar. They were given to locals who benefit from those organizations. For the last six years she has crocheted about 100 hats per year.

“I come from a giving family,” said Jones. “My mom and dad were always trying to help other people. I just grew up this way, and I love helping other people, and making them smile. I don’t judge anyone because we never know what they’ve been through.”

Jones said she starts in January and crochets all year long before donating the hats in December.

“I just like doing for others, and this has been a source of happiness for me since I retired,” said Jones.

Emma Spaeth is a staff writer for the Half Moon Bay Review covering community, arts and sports. Emma grew up in Half Moon Bay before earning a bachelor’s degree in public relations from the University of Oregon.

(1) comment

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🥰what a beautiful story. May mrs.Jones inspire us all to give to our communities.

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