Avery Roman and Marandy Woolridge hosted their fifth annual Outreach Thanksgiving Dinner on Tuesday for residents who will be without a hot meal on Thanksgiving Day.
Roman, a U.S. Army veteran who served tours in Afghanistan and Korea, started providing Thanksgiving dinners because of his six daughters.
“I try to show them the importance of helping other people especially when you have the chance to help somebody less,” Roman said. “I try to show them the true value of lending a helping hand to the next man if you got.”
Woolridge joined Roman because she isn’t a stranger to giving back to her community. She used to donate books and paper to The Salvation Army. She never threw events such as the Outreach because she wasn’t in the position to do so, but joining Avery allowed her to give back in a bigger way.
“It’s a team effort just to make it work,” she said. “We want to let people know people care, and we come out of our own pockets.”
Donations were accepted before the dinner, and two eateries in particular donated in a big way. Granny Hands, in Greenville and owned by Tisha Turner, has donated the dressing every year since Roman started providing meals to the community.
Another eatery that’s donated a notable amount was Diamond’s Grill and Market, Roman’s friend Casius Woolridge works there. He and Roman cooked all night to provide dinner to the people who need it most.
“Me being blessed, I’m just trying to show my kids the right way,” Roman said. “If you got a little something extra it ain’t nothing wrong with helping someone else out.”