GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Suffice to say, a ton of food is a lot of food. Nobody knows that better than Bob Rutherford. We recently featured Bob on our Project Homefront series. He's been the driving force behind a massive food drive at the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Gulfport.
Bob, and some of his fellow residents at the AFRH, decided they would try to get a ton of food donated to the food pantry at the Seabee Base. Some people told Bob, that may be too ambitious of a goal.
Bob is a member of the Fleet Reserve Association. They have done a wonderful job of getting money donated to purchase food for the food pantry.
"They said there is a need there, so why not respond," Bob told us during our recent interview.
To say the 493 residents of the Armed Forces Retirement Home have responded, would be an understatement. Keep in mind, they wanted to donate a ton of food in the first year.
"What we wanted to do in a year, we did in six months. We are now at 2,680 pounds," he said with a well deserved look of satisfaction on his face.
Any resident who so wishes, can give a monetary donation to Bob. He then heads over to the Seabee Base Commissary and buys the food. Then he gets the food weighed and takes it over to the food pantry.
Military families, who can be facing some financial hardships, find the donations to be very helpful.
The folks at the military home and the residents at the Seabee base are separated by only a few miles geographically, but by decades in years. Ask the veterans though, and you quickly realize it doesn't really matter to them.
There is no way to really thank those military veterans for the extraordinary contributions they have made.
Back at the home, Bob and friends have been keeping a scale and marking it off as the food is donated. The marker is already off the charts.
As you might imagine, although they have far exceeded their goals, the residents have no plans to stop. Bob told us as long as there is a need, the folks at the AFRH will step up to help.