Kimberly Normand
Posted December 30 2001

Dads donate to hospital


The support group Dads of Florida recently donated more than 100 toys to the Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital in Hollywood.

Group members contributed about $250 to purchase toys. They are Mark Kleiman of Hollywood; Bob Bettelli of Davie; Clarence Sharp of Plantation; and Bob Schlafke and Tony Spalding, both of Fort Lauderdale.

About two dozen of the toys were donated by Publix markets in Davie and Sunrise. Walgreens in Davie provided the group with a $20 store gift certificate to purchase the toys.

The group on Dec. 12 delivered the toys -- which included board games, miniature cars, coloring books and puzzles -- to the children's hospital.

"Some dads are not lucky enough to see their kids at Christmas. This gave the guys a chance to do something good for other children in need during the holidays," said Bettelli, director of Dads of Florida.

The group, founded in October 1999, is part of the national organization Dads Against Discrimination. Dads of Florida is composed of about 200 divorced and unwed fathers, second wives and grandparents interested in changing present laws discriminating against fathers.

Bettelli and his wife, Jean, also the group's treasurer, joined Dads of Florida after their son went through a divorce involving a child custody battle.

"You always hear about deadbeat dads. We have been involved in the organization since the beginning. I just wanted to show that there are good guys out there," Jean Bettelli said.

Dads of Florida. Fathers helping children by helping Fathers

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