A new nonprofit organization will take over the duties of planning and hosting the annual Red Andrews Christmas Dinner in Oklahoma City, a group of the man's relatives and community leaders announced Wednesday.
The Red Andrews Christmas Dinner Foundation was formed following an announcement last week that the dinner, a tradition in Oklahoma City since the 1940s, had been canceled. An immediate outpouring of support to find a way to continue the dinner resulted in the foundation's formation.
“All of us in the Red Andrews family are absolutely thrilled to death about it being set up,” said Larry Cassil, Andrews' nephew. “I appreciate very much the fact this group is willing to take on the obligation.”
Local attorney Robert Goldman, whose family has longtime ties to the dinner, will be the chairman of the foundation's board, according to a news release. Other board members will be Cassil and attorney John Yoeckel, who is a member of the Oklahoma City Planning Commission.
“During this short period of restructuring, the response of the community through phone calls and social media has been overwhelming,” Goldman said at a news conference Wednesday. “From corporate participation to the individual volunteers, we've been inundated by people who share our desire to keep the dinner a success. Its longtime continuation is a proud legacy of this city.”