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May 13, 2014 7:49 am

‘A chance to give back’

Written by Tom Lawrence

Marge Flom (from left), Catherine and Ken Harris, all of Powell, and Elder A.J. Rasmussen, a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints missionary from Reno, Nev., helped sort food collected on Saturday. Marge Flom (from left), Catherine and Ken Harris, all of Powell, and Elder A.J. Rasmussen, a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints missionary from Reno, Nev., helped sort food collected on Saturday. Tribune photo by Tom Lawrence

Stamp Out Hunger National Food Drive collects 6,543 pounds of food  

It was a cold, rainy day — a perfect Saturday to curl up on the couch with a book or a movie and a bowl of popcorn.

So what were all those people doing at the Park County Annex?

They were hustling about with cans and boxes of food. Despite that, most wore smiles and were clearly proud of what they were doing.

Which they should have been. They were helping the Powell Valley Loaves and Fishes and the Powell Post Office with the Stamp Out Hunger National Food Drive.

“It’s a chance to give back for what I’ve gotten in my lifetime,” Glen Holm said.

Holm was teaming with Dallas Bennett and Bruce Fauskee, all of Powell, to place food in a storage building behind the Annex. The men wore caps to keep the rain off them, sweaters against the cold and smiles as they worked.

“It’s a chance to help out in the community,” Fauskee said.

“Remarkable company, too,” Bennett said.

“The pay is the best,” Holm joked, as the men chuckled. Like everyone else, they were volunteers.

Marge Flom of Powell was helping to sort the food as it came in, writing on the tops of the cans with a black marker. Eleven postal carriers picked items up from people on Saturday and took them to the Post Office.

From there, volunteers picked it up and brought the food to the Annex. It was a beehive of activity as the 6,543 pounds of food were collected.

The food will be distributed to people during the course of the year. The amount collected is less than the record of about 10,000 pounds that were taken in last year and is in keeping with previous totals.

“This is just something I help out with all the time,” Flom said, still marking cans as she talked. “Because it’s the right thing to do.”

Catherine and Ken Harris were next to Flom in the line. They said there was a simple reason they were there.

“Just to help the community out where I can,” Catherine said.

With a smile, Ken said he did it “for the fun of it” but then echoed his wife. He wanted to do his share.

Elder A.J. Rasmussen, a Church of Latter-day Saints missionary from Reno, Nev., also was at the Annex. Rasmussen said he wanted to join in to assist the community.

Julie Fulton of Powell, who works for Loaves and Fishes, said it was a solid year, if not at the level of the 2013 drive. Fulton has been involved with it for 28 years and said it makes her proud to see people open their cupboards and hearts to ensure needy people have something to eat.

Joe Barski of Powell, a retired postal carrier, has been involved with the food drive since the Postal Service chose to lend a hand about 15 years ago.

Barski, like others who were working Saturday, said he just wants to help out in his community. That is true of hundreds and hundreds of people, he said.

“Most people get involved,” Barski said. “It’s a good thing to see.”

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