The Utica Rescue Mission held its annual Thanksgiving Banquet for community members. But not everyone could physically attend. Some homebound people spend Thanksgiving alone and without a meal. But I spent the day with a group of mission volunteers driving door-to-door to bring Thanksgiving to those in need.
The first step is prepping, packing, and hitting the road.
"It's an amazing feeling to know we're making a difference in someone else's life," says Keri Kane, Utica Rescue Mission volunteer.
Keri Kane and her family volunteered to deliver hot meals to more than 20 residents in our community.
"We teamed up with the Rescue Mission and friends of ours that feel the same way and we're gonna try to make a difference," says Keri.
We stopped at an apartment complex in Clinton, and many folks spending the holidays alone were happy to meet Keri and her family.
"Good people that care and take there time to bring other people that are alone a dinner, a nice warm dinner," says Ricarda Mitchell, hot meal recipient.
"A cooked dinner. And how does it make you feel? Happy," says Milton Johnson, hot meal recipient.
"Looks like a mother and daughter taking the time out of their day to deliver meals. It's kinda special ya know," says Judy Turturo, hot meal recipient.
Judy says she doesn't like celebrating holidays, but today, she gets to eat something she's been craving.
"Stuffing... That's my favorite part of Thanksgiving and I peeked into the styrofoam container after the 2 ladies popped their heads out for a minute and I was like oh wow I'm finally getting my stuffing, whaddya know," says Judy.
The volunteers agree that seeing the recipients smile when they open their meals, is the best Thanksgiving gift of all.
"To give back to people who don't have family and friends and cant do the things we do every day, its really special," says Morgan Kane, Utica Rescue Mission volunteer.
"We really need to take all the things that we are thankful for and the gifts we've been given this year and send them forward and pay them back to somebody else," says Keri.
The Utica Rescue Mission says they've cooked 100 turkeys, prepared 1200 meals, and made nearly 700 home deliveries... All for this one day of Thanksgiving.