Beiting delivers … again

Published 11:04 pm Saturday, December 13, 2008

Volunteers scurried on and off the loading dock at General Refrigeration Saturday, loading boxes of food into waiting trucks and trailers.

Bags of onions lay on one end of the dock and inside, cases of canned goods sat in rows, waiting to be loaded onto hand carts and hauled outside.

In the midst of all the activity was a white haired man with a big smile on his face. The Rev. Ralph Beiting, whose Appalachian Mission Center is known far and wide as an agency that touches the lives of people most in need of help, was presiding over a yearly dispersal of food for the needy.

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“Today we’re going to deliver 750,000 pounds of food for 110 organizations to divide,” Beiting said. “With this about 14,000 families will be helped.”

And this year, South Point would be the distribution center. AMC usually uses a warehouse in Louisa, Ky., but it was not available this year and Beiting’s own new warehouse is under construction.

The Rev. Charles Moran, pastor of St. Ann Catholic Church in Chesapeake, heard about Beiting’s plight and knew one of his parishioners,

John Smith, owns General Refrigeration. Moran connected Smith’s kindness with Beiting’s need. It worked. And Saturday morning, the warehouse in South Point was the focal point of a lot of attention.

Patricia Hyden, of Alexandria, Ky., was waiting to take food to 73 families in Owsley County, Ky., “the second poorest county in the nation,” she said. She was born in Owsley County, so she knows the need and appreciates the assistance from Beiting’s organization in meeting that need.

“This means someone is not going to go hungry. This will be given with pride,” she said.

Byrd Daniels, of the Community Mission Organization in Chesapeake, waited to receive a food distribution as well.

“This is going to help,” he said.

Deacon Bob Maynard, of the Old Route 3 Independent Baptist Church in Martin County, Ky., stuck his head out of his truck and called to an Ironton Tribune reporter and photographer as he waited in line for his food delivery.

“We’ve got a lot of families that need this,” he said. As for Beiting, “I thank God for him,” Maynard said.

Beiting said the 750,000 pounds of food is proof positive that America is still a great country with great people who will reach out a hand to help those in need.