Spirit of Alabama: Church, Veterans Organization Teams Up for Holiday Food Drive


Doing good for others and setting an example for others sums up a Northport congregation that teamed up with the local Vietnam Veterans of America over the holidays.

The back doors of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Northport were wide open, with a truck backed to the entrance. Food was getting stacked up inside the church, with a lot more still waiting on someone who could unload it all.

“Yes, this particular project is really popular with the members of our congregation,” said church member Cheyenne Martin. “They’ve been volunteering probably for about five years and this is the first year that we’ve had the opportunity to host it inside our building and we’re so excited to be able to do that.”

Tuscaloosa’s Vietnam Veterans group have been collecting food for the church for nearly 35 years, and it’s the fifth year the church is involved.

Vietnam veterans know plenty about service, and they’re especially proud of taking care of their own.

The combined food drive serves hundreds of families in need.

“But veterans themselves sometimes fall through the cracks and that’s what we’re here for, to help the veterans,” said Vietnam Veterans Chapter 301 member Herb Champion. “Not just the veterans, but the widows and their families.”

Their first year, the group collected enough food for five families. This year, they’re serving more than 300. They’ve got everything from flour and sugar to mac and cheese, beef stew, peanut butter, beans and more.

Like a lot of folks, you may see a story like this one and think ‘boy, I ought to get involved in something like that, I should reach out and help others.’ Well, Vietnam veteran Herb Champion said there’s plenty of opportunities out there.

Website justserve.org is a place he said he recommends checking out. It lists volunteer organizations and opportunities available, making it easy to find a place you can call home.

Categories: Local News, Spirit of Alabama