New River Valley woman spreading neighborly love one scarf at a time

New River Valley News

RADFORD, Va. (WFXR) — One woman from the New River Valley is providing warmth and love for the people in the City of Radford.

Barbara VanDyke — a knitter with a big heart– saw a need in the Radford community to keep folks warm.

“Anybody could have done this. People say, but you took the initiative. Well, yeah, I did. I went, have, and I got it done,” said VanDyke, a New River Valley resident.

Vandyke certainly accomplished that goal thanks to some help from the City of Radford and the Leary family, who owns the New River Valley Rent-All.

“She asked if she could use my fence, and I said, yea, that sounds good. Let’s do it. You can use as much fence as you’d like,” said Daniel Leary, General Manager of New River Valley Rent-All.

VanDyke was able to bring the ‘Chase the Chill’ Program to the City of Radford.

‘Chase the Chill’ is a program where people in the knitting or crochet communities make scarves, hats, and more throughout the year and place them in public places — like on the fence at the New River Valley Rent-All — for people in need to take.

“It’s wonderful that we have people that are willing to step up and do such a wonderful job for their neighbors and the people in this community,” said Radford Mayor David Horton.

This is the second year that VanDyke has hung knitted goods on the fence.

“Oh, I love it. It makes me feel so good because I did not know how people would respond to this. Last year I had over 130 items, and they were all gone,” VanDyke said.

However, something special happened on Sunday, Feb. 14: It was the first time she saw someone benefit from this giving fence.

“It touches my heart, see it’s needed,” said VanDyke.

Thanks to the help of the community, VanDyke can continue her mission to keep the community warm.

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