Earlier today, I spoke with Gary LeBlanc at Mercy Chefs and first and foremost he asked me to express his profound gratitude to every Grassfire team member who has helped out.
Gary also shared that they are seeing amazing stories of hope in the midst of the devastation. As of this morning, Gary's team had already served just over 4,900 meals and he expects to continue at a pace of 1,000-1,500 meals per day while these communities deal with the shock of what took place.
Soon after they started preparing hot meals, Gary heard about a small, neighboring community called Crockett that was also devastated and without power. Gary's team packed up 400 meals and headed for Crockett.
As it turns out, Crockett had a relief distribution site set up but no relief agencies had yet been to their town. With the community totally without power, the people were praying that someone would bring them food. That's when Gary and his Mercy Chefs team arrived with 400 hot meals.
Gary told me many tears were shed as they served the hot meals. It was literally a godsend. Gary promised the people of Crockett that Mercy Chefs would continue to bring meals at breakfast and dinner until power was restored. And yesterday, Mercy Chefs adopted two more small towns in similar situations.
Simply put, the need is great -- and thanks in large part to Grassfire team members, Mercy Chefs is responding.
As I noted to you a few days ago, it costs about $2.50 to provide a hot meal to a victim or a volunteer in West Liberty or the other places Mercy Chefs will reach this year. That's the raw cost. That means it costs just $10 to provide a hot meal to a family of four; $30 to feed 12 people; $50 to feed 20 people; $100 to feed 40 people.