“When you work with people who’re doing things for others with their own time, it gives you faith in the people in your own country,” Bud says, describing his volunteer experience with Food Lifeline.
Bud, 77, first got involved in our hunger-relief work through his church. He’s always felt it’s important to help others, and after more than 60 members of his congregation came together to give their time in Food Lifeline’s warehouse, he began visiting regularly to help.
Every Tuesday morning, you can find Bud sorting and packing food that might otherwise go to waste here at the Hunger Solution Center. After his shift, he takes a few ginger molasses cookies to an elderly friend and reads to her. On Wednesdays, he gives time with his church.
Bud’s a true example of a hardworking neighbor who’s been through more than his fair share of trials, but instead of becoming bitter, he just wants to give back. His struggles began as a severely anemic infant — doctors didn’t think he’d survive past five — and continued as he grew up in a large family in a rural community with very few resources.
But as he aged, Bud grew stronger and more resilient. He began his professional life with Northwest Airlines and worked for the company until he retired about 18 years ago. He was then diagnosed with brain cancer seven years ago, and still experiences memory and balance issues. Two years later, he lost his wife of more than five decades, Tasha. He was devastated, but his will to live and make the world a better place didn’t falter, even after a heart attack last year.
Ever the fighter, Bud began exercising to promote his health and lost 30 pounds. He’s still a happy and active Northwesterner, often spending time with his son and two granddaughters, who live nearby.
In addition to literature, classical music and ice cream, Bud says volunteering has become one of the staples of his life. He believes having enough to eat can be truly transformative.
“Just having a meal can have such an effect on your life,” he says. “There’s always going to be people who need food.”
And with the help of committed hunger champions like Bud, we’ll always be here to help meet that need. Our most sincere thanks to Bud for his tireless effort! Happy, happy holidays — so many families will be able to celebrate because of compassionate people like you!