The Times West Virginian

February 14, 2013

Marion County comes through in big way for Gift of Love drive

Times West Virginian

— The residents of Marion County have made us mighty proud once again.

When we are sponsoring a worthwhile drive, they always seem to come through. And the Gift of Love food drive, like the Christmas Toy Shop drive at Christmas, is indeed most worthwhile.

Marion Countians responded to that need by contributing more than $14,100 to a campaign that was seeking to reach $5,000 last week at this time.

When that goal was reached, it was decided to raise the goal to $7,500 during Tuesday’s “big event” here when our publisher got on the roof, vowing to not come down until the financial goals of the food drive had been met. Whether having him on the roof was responsible for the additional $9,000 which was raised is not known, but it must have helped some. The final totals speak for themselves. That $14,000-plus is a very impressive figure. And Chuck Jessup appears none the worse for wear after camping out on the roof for much of Tuesday.

Most people are well aware that most of Marion County’s food pantries are almost bare after the Christmas holidays. That’s just the way it is. Most are well-stocked during the holiday season, but few people think about contributing to food pantries in January.

That’s why their food supplies dwindle and when their food supplies dwindle.

Residents may have noticed that our big push this year was for cash contributions for which Shop ’n Save is giving us a discount for purchasing food items there. But all the non-perishable food that was contributed gave us a big boost. The 12 area food pantries will be receiving more than ever when they visit the Times West Virginian tomorrow to collect their food.

There were three $1,000 checks presented. The Marion County Men’s and Women’s Democratic Clubs contributed one as did Consol Energy. A third came in anonymously.

We would like to thank Shop ’n Save for allowing us to purchase nutritious canned and dry foods at a discount rate so the dollars can be spread even further, the Fairmont Federal Credit Union for assistance with our checks as well as providing two pallets of food, and Fantasia Broadcasting for airing our “Chuck Being Stuck”-day activities on Tuesday. East Fairmont Junior High students contributed more than a pallet of food as well as $162. It’s good to see the young students getting involved in our food drive.

As Chuck Jessup said, the food drive was taken to a whole new level this year. We are already looking forward to our next one in 2014.