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Volunteers brave cold so no one goes hungry

Mobile Meals of La Crosse delivers 75-100 meals every day

Volunteers brave cold so no one goes hungry

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - The frigid temps aren't stopping a group of local volunteers.

Mobile Meals of La Crosse delivers meals to home-bound residents 365 days a year regardless of the temperature.

Mobile Meals has been delivering hot meals rain, shine, sleet or snow since 1971 -- almost 16,000 days in a row. Wednesday was no exception.

While most of us probably wanted to avoid the outdoors, these volunteers brave the elements making sure everyone had something to eat Wednesday.

Bill Power had no idea how cold it is outside because it doesn't matter to him. What matters is that these meals are still warm when he delivers them.

"It needs to be done so you go ahead and do it. I didn't think it was that bad," Power said.

Power has been a Mobile Meals of La Crosse volunteer for about a year now.

At least once each month, he rings the doorbell of La Crosse residents delivering a meal they may not otherwise have.

"If you have them at home then all you have to do is go to the kitchen to get 'em, and since I can do that, then it's my job then to help the other people that can't," Power said.

One couple on Power's route is Al and Marge Lueck. Last year Marge had a stroke. She is now mostly homebound and is no longer able to feed herself.

Fortunately for the Lueck's, Mobile Meals delivers every day around noon. And the couple of almost 63 years couldn't be more grateful for people like Power.

"Oh yeah, they're all good. You know the thing of it is they're all volunteering their time," Al Lueck said.

"They are so appreciated by the recipients who are very grateful for the fact that someone drove to their home, climbed the stairs, knocked on the door during a snow storm or during an ice storm or during a windy cold subzero day and delivered that meal," said Peter Grabow, Mobile Meals of La Crosse board chair.

Power said just because it's cold outside doesn't mean people like the Luecks should go hungry.

"The need is there whether the weather is or not," Power said.

Power said even if he were cold, knowing he's doing a good thing keeps him warm.

"And it doesn't take you that long. The route we had -- even last year when we had 24 people -- we could run it in about an hour. So it's not a bad deal. One hour a month out of your whole schedule isn't much time to give," Power said.

Mobile Meals of La Crosse delivers to between 75 and 100 people every day. The food is prepared by Mayo Clinic Health System and Bethany Lutheran Homes and all deliveries are made by volunteers, which keeps the cost low.

There are about 200 volunteers throughout the year, but Mobile Meals is always looking for more. If you would like to volunteer or receive a meal through the program, you can visit their website or call 608-784-4623

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