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Brotherly Love: A Warm Gift For Vets From ‘The Knit Wits’

By Ukee Washington

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — These women aren’t offended to be called Knit Wits.

“You have to chuckle after you say it,” says Anna Mae Gushue.

They’re all residents of Ann’s Choice senior living community in Warminster. Late last year, they asked some young veterans how to help soldiers. They asked for socks for veterans who have had a limb amputated.

“And Betty said, ‘Absolutely. We can do that,'” recalls Susan Abtouche, the director of philanthropy at Ann’s Choice.

Betty is Betty McQue. As Betty explains, “Some of them don’t have feet anymore, so a regular sock wouldn’t work. Some of them are for arms. They want them for warmth.”

Betty put out the call. So far, more than 60 knitters have responded with hundreds of handmade socks for Walter Reed and other military hospitals.

One knitter, Erika Woloschyn, says, “It gives me something to do, and it’s for a good cause.”

Another knitter, Hazel Charles, says, “I hope they feel someone out there cares.”

The Knit Wits aren’t just about charity. They also chat.

When Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick of Bucks County heard about The Knit Wits, he honored Betty and the others with a thank you in the Congressional Record.

“People are hearing about this group and are sending her monetary donations and donations of yarn,” Abtouche says.

“It will be a happy day when this group can disband because there is no more need for socks for amputees,” adds knitter Marian Williams.

Until then, they’ll keep knitting.

To find out how to help The Knit Wits, contact Susan Abtouche at

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