For the past several days, firefighters from throughout western Greenbrier County have been collecting groceries, placing them into bags, loading them onto fire trucks and making home deliveries, so that no one will be without a Christmas meal.
This is the second year that these meals have been distributed to the less fortunate in the area, said President of the Rupert Volunteer Fire Department’s Board of Directors, Bruce Alley, who was loading groceries and organizing the pick-ups on December 21. This year, crews had a list of over 50 people in need of meal delivery, and the departments made sure that each one of them received a complete meal.
Although the event is put together by those at the Rupert Volunteer Fire Department, firefighters from Quinwood, Rainelle, Smoot and Clintonville all arrive at the Rupert firehouse to pick up the meals and deliver them throughout the various towns, Alley continued.
This year, meal items included large hams, instant mashed potatoes, canned vegetables and more.
Rachel Gum, President of the Clintonville Fire Department, was picking up meals to be delivered to folks in her area, but she still took a moment to talk to The West Virginia Daily News. She said that her department often looks for ways to help others.
“We deliver meals every year just to give back to our community,” Gum said. “We deal with less house fires than we do calls for service.” Often, her crew will be seen cutting and stacking firewood, or shoveling driveways for people who need the extra help.
That same community feeling of is shared by those with each department.
“We try to do this for those who need it,” Alley continued, adding that it is not just the firefighters, but those in the community who make this happen.
“I need to thank everyone who donated,” Alley stated. “Kroger in Rainelle sold us the hams and the employees at the Dollar General in Rupert have been fantastic. They did a canned food drive, and collected close to 100 cans of food.”
He said he plans to keep the tradition going next year.