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Salvation Army serves up hundreds of Thanksgiving meals, bringing Central Texas community together

Salvation Army in Waco serves up Thanksgiving meals
Salvation Army in Waco serves up Thanksgiving meals(KWTX)
Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 4:28 PM CST
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) -Everyone deserves a warm meal and to come together with others on Thanksgiving, so the Salvation Army made sure to supply just that by giving out hundreds of free meals in Waco Thursday.

People lined up, ready for their chance to grab a plate full of turkey and a slice from their assortment of pies.

“I used to be one of the homeless brothers myself and amongst the homeless sisters,” Virgil Bell of Waco said.

“I say you never know where a person has been.”

Bell says he’s been here year after year as someone who needed a meal, but now to come together with the community in fellowship.

“I love mingling among those of low, humble beginnings and spreading the love,” Bell said.

“Every move I make is about the love.”

The event has people coming back for good food and to find support.

Natalie McClure went from sitting down for a meal to serving them up.

“First I started out as someone who came and utilized the Salvation Army,” McClure said.

“I was homeless for a number of years here in Waco and then ended up transitioning into the Salvation Army Sally’s House. After that, I decided it was time to give back.”

Giving back to the community is now a tradition.

“It keeps me grounded,” McClure said.

“It reminds me where I came from and that everybody has the ability to move forward.”

“It’s so nice to get to know people and to have a family to come with to support you,” Piper Starling said.

Piper has been coming to volunteer every year since she was 2 years old. This year is now her family’s 10th year of volunteering.

“You get to do it as a family and as a tradition,” she said.

“The definition of Thanksgiving is to give back to those who don’t have,” Sam Starling, Piper’s father, said.

Salvation Army had a special partnership with H-E-B this year to make it happen in lieu of their annual Feast of Sharing event, usually held prior to Thanksgiving but canceled due to COVID-19.

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