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Wilbarger County Residents Thankful for Thanksgiving Meal

Hundreds of Thanksgiving Day meals are enjoyed in Vernon.

Hundreds of Thanksgiving Day meals were also enjoyed in Vernon.
For nearly three decades a Vernon couple has provided a traditional Thanksgiving meal for the community.
Mechell Dixon was in Vernon today and has more.

For the 27th year, several hundred Wilbarger County residents had something to be thankful for.
That something was Pat and Glenna Bryant, who, with the help of dozens of volunteers, provided residents with food and fellowship this Thanksgiving.
And it was all free of charge.

Volunteers have turned serving up Thanksgiving meals into a well-oiled machine and that's a good thing since coordinators say each year gets bigger and better.

"Things have changed so much, from doing the routes.  I don't have to do them anymore.  Retired mailmen do them.  It's just a lot easier,"  says Glenna Bryant, who coordinated the Vernon Thanksgiving meal.

Also, because many volunteers, who did this when they were children, are now bringing their children to help.

"We've got two boys that are starting to get into community service hours and learning as athletes that they need to give back so that's why we brought them back here and allowed them to do this as well, so they can also learn a little bit of compassion," says Kari Ehringer, who delivered meals in Vernon with her family.

Compassion that comes from delivering Thanksgiving meals to people like Russ Haney, who says he would not be able to enjoy this taste of the holiday without the help of these volunteers.

"I'm a survivor of a head injury and this really helps me out with everything and expenses and with the nutrition to get back in shape again," Haney explains.

While volunteers were out delivering meals people gathered at the Wilbarger Auditorium and waited patiently for their turn to feast.

"You come and visit with your friends.  You make new friends.  I've just been talking to these lovely people.  Don't know who they are but I'm gonna find out," says Peggy Howe, who lives in Vernon.

"I've come all the way from new Mexico and I'm here for my turkey and to celebrate the 27th anniversary," says Kathy Sims, who lived in Vernon.

And shortly after 12 p.m., the doors opened.

People poured in to get plates full of turkey, ham,dressing, green beans and other sides as well as a dessert table to die for.
And this was all because in 1986 a Vernon couple wanted to give back to the community-- a gift that keeps on giving now 27 years later.
Overall, 854 meals were served to Wilbarger County residents.
And now that Thanksgiving is over the Bryants and volunteers will do it all over again on Christmas Day.
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