JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Thanksgiving Day is one of the busiest days of the year at some of our charities.
The Salvation Army on Presto Lane in Northwest Jackson served up a staggering number of meals Thursday: 400 served in-house, and 800 delivered to families.
The assembly line began at 8:30 a.m. Volunteers fell into place to spoon out the turkey and trimmings. The plates were assembled and brought to a separate room for boxing up. An invitation for Christmas events at the Salvation Army is taped to each meal, then they're delivered to families in the Jackson area that have been pin-pointed ahead of time.
"We know places where there are people in need, shut ins. We contact them, people call us, the list accumulates from there," said Salvation Army Captain Ken Chapman.
Some of the volunteers come every year. Others are newcomers.
"We wanted to try it out, never done it before. We're impressed with how everything is down here," said Marc Abboud of Madison, who came with his two sisters.
"I just came out here to help, spend Thanksgiving with my family and friends. We came out here, just to help," said Calvin Brown.
On Thanksgiving Day each year, Jackson ward 3 councilman Ken Stokes becomes a delivery man.
He's been delivering the meals for more than 20 years. With a caravan of family and friends, he first surprises the dispatchers at the Jackson Police Department. Then, he knows exactly which houses to approach in his ward to find men, women and children who might otherwise go without.
"A lot of people don't have a lot, but they thank god for their life. That's why we're glad to come out here, help those we can," Councilman Stokes says.
The Salvation Army Thanksgiving meal event is a big operation that relies on donations. We're told Lieutenant Governor Phil Bryant donated 200 turkeys for the effort.
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