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Giving back: Volunteers serve up smiles, warm meals

By Austin Jackson | Published Wednesday, October 31, 2018
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Lunch is Served

LUNCH IS SERVED – Paradise resident Mount Bouldin, 83, waits outside his home for conversation and a warm meal. Bouldin has been a Meals on Wheels recipient for the past eight months. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

For four years, Mount Bouldin served in the Navy. For 50 years, the Paradise resident laid brick.

Now, the 83-year-old lives a simple life complicated by decades of backbreaking work.

Sometimes family comes around to visit. Mostly, he’s alone.

After his service in the military where he weathered three typhoons in the Pacific, then years of laying brick, he has his home, a busted hip and war stories to show for it.

But five days a week, at 11 a.m., Bouldin gets a warm meal and a little conversation.

Like clockwork, Bouldin can be found on the wheelchair ramp outside his home when Meals on Wheels volunteers drop by. He looks forward to it.

“It helps,” Bouldin said. “I’m not much of a cook.”

Bouldin is one of many Meals on Wheels recipients in Wise County. He’s been receiving meals and getting to know volunteers Scott and David Mosley for the past eight months.

Loading Up

LOADING UP – Scott Mosley, the vice chair of the Wise County Committee on Aging, and David Mosley, a fellow Meals on Wheels volunteer load up their truck ahead of their weekly route to share warm meals and conversation with the elderly. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

For Scott and David Mosley, volunteers who deliver food on their route every Wednesday, it’s not just about feeding people.

“We just like getting out and being able to see them, and hopefully make somebody’s day a little brighter,” said Scott Mosley. “You get to know these folks, about their family, kids, dogs and cats. They’re looking to see a smiling a face. It’s what we do.”

Mosley has been serving Meals on Wheels for the past year in Wise County. He was called to volunteer years back in Haltom City.

“I got involved at the company I was working for to volunteer,” he said. “It was optional, but I got in and loved it. It wasn’t something that I thought I would enjoy. But it’s the highlight of my week.”

When he moved to Wise County, he joined the non-profit as both a volunteer and as the Wise County Committee on Aging vice chair. He and his dad David help out on routes every Wednesday.

Mosley said he sees people go on and off the routes in his time – for happy and sad reasons. It comes with the territory when you’re serving people on hospice care.

Recipients of the service are generally elderly and have medical conditions. They aren’t able to provide for themselves.

“People come on because they need it,” said Wise County Committee on Aging Executive Director Amy Pegues.

A warm meal five days a week goes a long way, Mosley said.

In Wise County, there are plenty of people who need it.

Pegues said Meals on Wheels of Wise County serves 200 individuals, with many of the individuals requiring a meal for their husband or wife as well.

With limited resources, Meals on Wheels can’t serve everyone, but Pegues said they try.

The process to serve starts at 7 a.m.

One hundred meals are prepared on site in a kitchen in Chico. The meals are then packaged and delivered to the Decatur headquarters by around 9:30 a.m.

A fleet of volunteers then take over, delivering the food and offering a little light to people’s day.

It costs $150 a month to feed a senior. While donations are helpful, what Meals on Wheels in Wise County needs the most is volunteers, especially at this time of year as the weather gets cold.

“We need more volunteer drivers to run these routes,” Mosley said. “The biggest thing is time. If you have the time. Full-time, fill in whatever it may be, we need more drivers.”

Time is what Mosley decided to give years ago and he’s been looking forward to volunteering ever since.

“For some of these people it’s the only opportunity they have to see people and have a conversation,” Mosley said. “It’s why we do it.”

To volunteer or donate, contact the Wise County Committee on Aging office, 940-627-5329 or email director Amy Pegues directly, Amy@wisemeals.org.

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