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Couple honored after 20 years of service at The Pantry

Linda and Tom Scott began working at The Pantry 20 years ago after they retired, and this week, they were honored for their service.

The couple was named this year’s Volunteers of the Year at The Pantry during their board meeting on Monday.

When they retired in 2000, the Scotts were looking for something to do and a way to give back to the community. Members of St. Andrews United Methodist Church, the Scotts became involved in The Pantry after speaking to Andy Peacock, who was one of the original organizers of The Pantry.

“It was good to do something for someone else,” Linda said. “(There are) a lot of minutes in the day when you’re retired. It’s a blessing just be able to give to other people.”

Throughout years of volunteering at The Pantry, the Scotts’ responsibilities grew. Currently, they help with pickup at Kroger and making deliveries to the food bank. Another thing they enjoy doing is home-bound delivery, bringing food to those who are in need but are unable to come to The Pantry to pick up items.

“They’re always ready to hug you and talk to you,” Linda said of making home bound deliveries. “They want you to really stay longer and hear all the things they have to say. It’s rewarding.”

Over the course of two decades of volunteering and offering their time, the Scotts have seen The Pantry grow immensely from where it was when they began helping in 2000. The Pantry is serving more people throughout Oxford and Lafayette County now than they were 20 years ago.

A product of that is food supply running short in key moments of the year. Last October, for example, the shelves were bare and the crunch of the holiday season was approaching. The stock supply did not stay low for long.

“Our storage room was empty,” Tom said. “Over the holiday season, people just flooded us with donations and really helped us survive.”

Tom, 82, and Linda, 74, said they anticipate volunteering at The Pantry for many years to come – as long as “the health holds up.”

The Pantry is located at 713 Molly Barr Road next to the Oxford Police Department.