bartek center

The Bartek Center in Attleboro which houses the city's recreation program.

ATTLEBORO — The families of 30 children who attend the recreation department’s Youth Center program have been given fresh turkeys for their Thanksgiving feast, thanks to the generosity of three charitable organizations.

The turkeys, which came from Attleboro’s Willow Tree Poultry Farm, and $20 Stop & Shop gift cards to help pay for the fixings, were presented Monday night at the Bartek Recreation Center, director Dennis Walsh said.

Funding for the 10th annual event came from the Jeff Burgess Memorial Fund, the Emmett Larkin Memorial Fund and the Winnie Bourque Fund.

Family members of Jeff Burgess and Emmett Larkin were on hand to present the turkeys and gift cards.

They included Mike Burgess, Jeff’s dad, Jeff’s sister and brother-in-law Amy and Steve Houle and their two daughters, as well as Dee Larkin, Emmett’s brother.

“They spoke to the kids about their loved ones and how precious every day is,” Walsh said in emailed comments to The Sun Chronicle.

Jeff Burgess was a water department worker who died in a traffic accident at the age of 35 while on the job in 2009. Emmett Larkin was a recreation commissioner who died unexpectedly at the age of 52 in 2011.

Both were known for their kindness and generosity toward others.

Along with Walsh, those attending included Tim Killion, the department’s program director, recreation commissioner Leo Johnson, and state Rep. Jim Hawkins, D-Attleboro.

George W. Rhodes can be reached at 508-236-0432.

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