Residents of Claremore and Rogers County turned out en mass last week at the Claremore Meals on Wheels (MoW) food drive.
Held at Walmart, the food drive was coordinated by MoW’s Paul Denis, assisted by Larry Dealy, Scott White, Lin Wiggs, Willy Faught, Pat Lattanzia, Mary Jo Rostek and Rolla Griffith.
Nearly 100 volunteer cooks, helpers and drivers serve without pay to deliver meals to shut-ins. This year deliveries are at a rate of more than 12,000 annually.
Meals on Wheels is a United Way Agency and as such receives base underwriting without which we would be unable to serve the neighbors we do.
At the drive, recommended shopping lists were handed to Walmart customers by a host of people including (in addition to MoW volunteers), Claremore Police, Claremore Fire Department, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Claremore Marine Corps League and SPARK (Sharing Progress Around Rogers County-High School Student organization).
Additionally, the Rogers County Mounted Patrol served all day, canvassing the entire Walmart parking several multiple times.
“It was great to see families who were teachings their kids about giving by procuring food items and donating them to the MOW enclosed trailer, then allowing the kids to pet the horses of the mounted patrol and it was refreshing to see some also donating cash,” said Jack Weyler, president, Meals on Wheels.
Walmart Manager, Lindel Stephens, arranged to have a special display of recommended items for purchase, making it very convenient for customers to select the items they wanted to donate.
Those assisting with the food drive included Police Officer Shaun Holmes, Marine Corps League representative Dale Marsh, Firemen Ty Burnett, Robert Casey, Cory Conner, Jeff Downing, Clarence Driver, Steve Hammer, Jack Massey, Mark Owens, Kyle Stephens, Seth Wages, Jim Warden, David Willey, Ken Willhoite and Darrell Wilson. Also helping were SPARK students Hope Conner, Ashley Novar, Carrera Starr, Madison Stutler, Phyllis Thompson, Anna Venizelos and Krista Wolf.
Oklahoma Highway Patrolman Gena Gillis and her mother Joann Beetley greeted customers. R.C. Mounted Patrolmen included Rebecca Bass, Dale Brookshiere, Lois Caron, Ron Choate, Major Coy Jenkins and Sara Nieminen.
Persons interested in volunteering or learning more about Meals on Wheels may call Larry Dealy at (918) 344-1518, Paul Denis at (918) 630-5355, or Jack Weyler at (918) 697-6265.