In spite of the cold and rain, plenty of people showed up Friday afternoon to receive 40-pound boxes of frozen chicken at no charge from a tractor-trailer truck parked next to the old Connelly School.
"That sure is going to help my Christmas," said one woman as she carried a box to her car.
Thanks to "some friends" of LifeSong Family Church, Tyson Foods in Shelbyville donated 36,000 pounds of chicken. It came at very short notice. Pastor Rocky Cunningham only found out about it Thursday. So it was announced at the First United Methodist Church's Care Kitchen Thursday night, some phone calls were made, and the word went out.
"Praise the Lord," Cunningham said as he handed down another box from the back of the truck. Church members kept the boxes moving inside the truck, and others were on the ground handing them out and helping people put them in their cars.
Ronald Robinson, director of the Lewisburg Housing Authority, took boxes to deliver to some of the LHA's elderly people who couldn't get there.
"A lot of people are hurting around here," said church member Jeff Ellis as he surveyed the people waiting in line.
Cunningham said they had started about noon in Bedford County and given away about 200 boxes of chicken before moving on to Lewisburg.
Many of Marshall County's least privileged children have gotten Christmas presents thanks to Cops for Kids, Angel Trees, and other charities. Now, thanks to LifeSong Family Church and a lucky connection to Tyson and that food company, their mothers and grandmothers can give them a hot, nourishing meal of fried chicken, chicken potpie, or chicken and dumplings.