Hundreds enjoy Thanksgiving dinner
by Martha Sparks
CHAPMANVILLE — Free turkey dinners were served throughout all of Logan County Thanksgiving Day by scores of volunteers.
The event was held at Chapmanville Middle School from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. In all 591 dinners were prepared for delivery, take out or for eating in the school cafeteria. Organizer of the event, Ronald Lee Jones, said that more than 300 of those dinners were delivered to volunteers throughout Logan County by 1 p.m.
“We’re only half way through, but we’ve already delivered 340 dinners,” said Jones. “It’s been a busy morning and we’ve had a lot of volunteers. It’s been a real positive experience.”
Jones said dinners were delivered to the Logan County line at Man, Omar, Harts, Logan and Chapmanville.
The event is hosted under the name In-Action Project.
“The In-Action Project is a collection of community members from different areas,” said Jones. “We have kids from the schools participating, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, church groups, civic organizations and business. It’s a real collective effort.”
Jones expressed his appreciation to the sponsors and volunteers.
“It’s such a huge list that you just can’t name everybody individually,” Jones said. “The joy of it all is that it is a community interacting with everybody working toward a common good.”
Jones said this was the third year the free Thanksgiving dinner had been offered. The first year he estimates that there were close to 275 people served; the second year there were 508 people and this year the total ended at 591.
Jones said he feels like he is sowing a seed in his youth volunteers.
“We’ve seen a lot of young people taking pride in the little jobs that we give them,” said Jones.
Chapmanville Mayor Jerry Price Jr. gave the event well-deserved praise.
“I just wanted to say what an asset that Lee and Heather Jones are to the Chapmanville community,” said Price. “I know they wish no personal thanks, but they have given up their Thanksgiving Day to make sure that others are fed and can enjoy their Thanksgiving. This year alone they served 591 dinners out of Chapmanville Middle School to shut-ins, widows, homeless, elderly, and people with no family to celebrate with. Lee and Heather have selflessly given their time to show their Christian Love for others, without wanting or needing any praise, but they deserve credit.”
Price said he also wanted to acknowledge the scores of volunteers.
“They needed a lot of volunteers to pull this dinner off and there are too many volunteers to list, but they know who they are and I also want to say “Thank You” to them also,” said Price. “I only spent a few minutes at the dinner, but the smiles and love on the faces of everyone involved confirmed what a wonderful event this is.”
Jessica Griffith of Sissonville, along her daughter, mother and grandmother, all came to volunteer their time to the dinner. Griffith became acquainted with Jones’ wife Heather at Dr. Scott Segal’s office in Logan.
“I’m a pharmaceutical rep and she works there as a physician’s assistant,” said Griffith.
Griffith said she wanted to show her daughter that not everyone is as fortunate as she is.
“Her first three years of her birthday we donated her birthday gifts to St. Judes,” said Griffith. “This kind of stuff is right up my alley.”
Griffith’s grandmother, Virginia Fisher, said she came to help, but instead watched over Griffith’s daughter, Addison.
“I was going to help, but she wanted me to watch over her, so I got to be with my baby,” said Virginia.
Griffith’s mother, Rhonda Fisher, said she was all for volunteering when Griffith mentioned it.
“This is something I always wanted to do,” said Rhonda.
The Jones’ would like to acknowledge their many sponsors for this year’s dinner. Sponsors included Logan Regional Medical Center; Chapmanville Middle School; Davita Inc.; Chapmanville East Grade School; Chapmanville West Grade School; Logan Pediatrics; Eden Family Practice; City of Chapmanville; Chapmanville Kiwanis Club; Dr. Ahmad Faridi; Stone Branch Church of God; Logan Service Unit of the Black Diamond Girl Scouts; Mill Creek Church of God; PRIDE Community Services; Boy Scouts Pack 443; Abraham & Ilderton Law Office; Hewett Mine Supply; Mr. and Mrs. Steven Rakes; Mrs. Penny Blair; Mr. and Mrs. David Lovejoy; Mr. and Mrs. Justin Bourne; Mrs. Sharone Jones; Mrs. Jill Hensley; Mr. and Mrs. Van Collins; Mr. Steve Runyon; Tabernacle of Praise Church of God of Culloden; Mrs. Tilah Moore; Pecks Mill United Methodist; Calvary Baptist; Mrs. Brenda York; W.Va.Senator Art Kirkendoll; Ms. Diana Adkins; Mrs. Jeannie Fowler; Erin Williamson and WVOW ; Logan DHHR; Mr. and Mrs. William Vernatter; Word of Life Church; Mrs. Jill Stone; Mrs. Meg Jarvis; Wyandot Service Unit of Black Diamond Girl Scout Council, Troops 2573, 2163, 4770, 4774, 4772 and 2447; Boy Scouts of America, Buckskin Council, Chapmanville Cub Scout Pack 28 and Mrs. Melissa Dingess.
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