Summit has much to be thankful for this year. While Summit was operating without power, heat, trains and gas we made it through Sandy. Many New Jersey towns, especially along the shore were not so lucky.
For many years, Summit’s little Other Fellows First Foundation (www.summitdiner.org) has asked the city of Summit to help New Jersey families in distress around Thanksgiving. Each year, the little city on the hill has turned out in force to share its generosity with the less fortunate.
This year’s post Sandy crisis environment gives new meaning to the word Thanksgiving. Once again, the foundation will be hosting its annual frozen turkey drive on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, November 18th, in front of the Summit Diner from 1- 4:00PM. All frozen turkeys, grocery bags and cash collected will go to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey.
The picture accompanying this article features Kathleen di Chiarra receiving a drive underwriting check from William Rapp, Commander of Summit’s Lindsey – Street Post # 322 of the American Legion to help make this year’s drive the biggest and best ever. Kathleen is the President and CEO of CFBNJ and lives here in town.
She is exceptionally grateful to the American Legion for their support and reminds us all how truly desperate so many of our New Jersey neighbors are this year in the wake of hurricane Sandy. Her food bank distributes over 3,500,000 pounds of food / month to the needy. Despite this enormous effort, she cannot keep up with the demand. Making matters worse, because of power loss, at a time of urgent need, she had to throw out tons of precious spoiled food. Commenting further, she said: “This Thanksgiving will be New Jersey’s most defining. The combination of a lousy economy and the arrival of Sandy created the perfect storm for the needy. For those who can help their neighbors, this is the time your extra efforts will make a huge difference to New Jersey families that are truly desperate.”
Brett Haire, Chairman of the Other Fellow First Foundation reminds us that… “Adversity does not develop character, it reveals it.” Summit has a long history of being exceptionally generous when times are tough and the chips are down. In 2008, at the depth of the financial crisis, which occurred right before Thanksgiving, he said the little city of Summit gave more food and money to Kathleen’s food bank than any other city in the entire state. In the wake of Sandy, he is urging the city to dig deep again for all of New Jersey’s fortunate families and come to the drive.
Former Mayor, Jordan Glatt, another turkey drive organizer, hopes the city will be very generous and quotes his old friend and former Mayor, Walter Long who often said… “Summit is a little city with a huge heart.”
Picture: Commander Bill Rapp hands Kathleen di Chiarra and Brett Haire of the OFFF a Turkey drive donation