Third Quincy truckload of food sent to Houston
A truck with potatoes and onions from Quincy left for Houston earlier this month, the third such truck to make the trip to help people in southeastern Texas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.
Quincy businesses including Lamb Weston, Jones Produce, Grigg Farms, and Faw and Sons, and Quincy families such as the Schaapmans and the Hornings helped either to fill the truck or cold-store the cargo.
Finding a truck to go to Houston was tricky, said Harriet Weber, who helped coordinate the effort to send the three trucks southward. A friend of a friend of Weber’s from Montana found a truck in El Paso, Texas, that was coming to Auburn, south of Seattle. From Auburn, the truck driver swung east and filled his truck with the load from Quincy. When he arrived at the Houston Food Bank, he took pictures and sent them to Weber.
“Everybody’s taken this project to heart,” Weber said. “Even the truck drivers.”
In addition to the food in the truck, Quincy folks unofficially adopted a Christian school in Houston that had taken on five feet of water during Hurricane Harvey. About 50 percent of the school’s students were homeless after the hurricane.
“They were living in FEMA shelters or with relatives because their homes have all been flooded,” Weber said.
Many of the students’ parents lost their businesses in the flooding, as well. All this destruction happened during the school’s 40th anniversary year. The flood thrashed hours of work decorating the school for its anniversary.
“They lost everything five feet and below in the school,” Weber said.
When the Quincy people made an offer of a check for $5,000 in donations, the school administrator wept, Weber said. The money will go toward new rugs, bookcases, teachers’ desks, and many other things.
“That was a cool part of this that happened, and I wasn’t even expecting that,” Weber said. “My goal was to get food down there. But because people were so generous, we had that extra money, and we were able to do this first-hand.”
The solidarity did not stop there, either. A class from Mountain View Elementary School made cards for the students at the school.
The trucks took to the Space City more than 45,000 pounds of food on each trip. The first truck carried dry beans, the second truck carried apples. Weber said the cargo of the first truck, according to the Houston Food Bank, fed 22,000 people.
The beans were very popular with the people in Houston, given the high protein content and the fact that beans don’t need to be refrigerated. The apples, potatoes and onions also came at a pivotal time, with Hurricane Irma in full swing in Florida and fresh fruit and vegetables in short supply.
“Sometimes you take on projects that are meant to be and take a life on their own,” Weber said. “This was one of them. This was just at the right time.”
By Sebastian Moraga, firstname.lastname@example.org