Serving others on Thanksgiving Day

Published 3:36 pm Friday, November 28, 2008

About 100 people dedicated a little time out of their Thanksgiving Day to make sure others could enjoy the holiday at home, too.

The volunteers gathered in the fellowship hall at Bainbridge’s First United Methodist Church to package Thanksgiving meals prepared by Winn-Dixie for delivery to those who might otherwise go without one.

Working together, it took the volunteers—people of numerous Christian denominations—a little more than an hour to get about 300 meals ready and take them to homes all over Decatur County, said the Rev. Steven Webb, pastor of Bainbridge UMC.

The list of people receiving the meals was comprised of a list submitted by churches, the Senior Center, the Georgia Division of Children and Family Services and other caring groups and individuals, said Mayo Livingston, who has been helping organize the delivery project for about 25 years.

For those who get the meals, whether they be elderly, homebound or less fortunate individuals, their response is heartfelt gratitude, Livingston and others said.

“Their faces light up when you go through the door of their home and tell them Happy Thanksgiving,” said longtime Bainbridge City Councilman Luther Conyers, who has helped deliver the meals for years.

For Richard Hughes, who was invited to help serve food by active community servant Bennie Brookins, getting involved in the meals’ delivery was a way to reach out to his neighbors.

“It’s about giving back on Thanksgiving, a special time for everybody,” Hughes said. “After we finish here, I’m going home and we have family coming to our house.”

For local forester Joe Livingston, who has helped his father, Mayo, deliver food since he was a young man, the project is a tradition that brings together caring people for a good cause.

“I remember the first year we delivered food, the ladies cooking the food at Winn-Dixie ran out of pots and pans,” Livingston said. “When they found out what the food was for, they went home and cooked in their own kitchens.”