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Touchdown for needy families

COAL GROVE – Five Dawson-Bryant High School football players and their coaches got a chance to do more than run balls back for touchdowns Wednesday.

Thursday, November 02, 2000

COAL GROVE – Five Dawson-Bryant High School football players and their coaches got a chance to do more than run balls back for touchdowns Wednesday.

They got to say thank you to their community.

Several Coal Grove Hornets varsity football players participated in a canned food drive Wednesday immediately after school to benefit the Ironton City Mission, head coach Nick Miller said.

"I know our community has a real need," Miller said. "I’m real pleased to see those that turned out for the occasion. This was strictly voluntary."

The coach said a recent news article inspired him to become involved in supporting the Ironton City Mission’s holiday food bank.

"I’ve read so much about it that I felt the least I could do is take one afternoon out and help the community," he said. "We have a lot of residents out of work and I know times are hard."

As the football players traveled from door-to-door asking Coal Grove and Deering residents to consider giving, the response was overwhelming, he added.

"We found many residents had bags of food sitting out on their porches with notes indicating they were for the ‘Coal Grove Hornet football team,’" Miller said. "Even though we only had a few guys out collecting, it was still impressive."

Offensive and defensive tackle Joe Sark said he collected food to help his community.

"The community comes out and watches us and supports us," the high school senior said. "I think the least we can do as a team is give back to them. It’s the right thing to do."

Even though he wasn’t a member of the football team, Josh Spears said he believed in the cause and wanted to help.

"I want to help people out that don’t have much money," the 11th-grader said. "I think it’s a good cause and I just wanted to help."

The team sought non-perishable items and canned foods, and, plans to hit the streets again later today, Miller said.

By day’s end, the team gathered enough food "to fill the back of a small pickup," he said.

"We’re going to get back out there today," he said. "There were several areas we didn’t get to and we know that. We are planning to take the food down to the mission on Friday after school. The community is being real responsive to us."