“I didn’t plan on living this long,” said Richard Williams.
Richard, 82, owned and operated local barbecue restaurants before retiring a decade ago. He described himself as a “terrible businessman” who didn’t save enough of his earnings. That’s why Richard visits 4Saints Episcopal Food Pantry once a month.
Richard’s wife of 50 years, Blanch, is an avid baker – she makes one special cake that Richard said “will knock your socks off” – and she puts the eggs Richard gets from the pantry to good use. Richard surmised that Blanch would whip up a cobbler with the canned peaches he received, along with other groceries, when he visited the pantry in May. Many of the cakes, pies, and other goods Blanch bakes end up going to friends and neighbors.
While Blanch is busy in the kitchen, Richard can often be found helping neighbors fix things around their houses. He also enjoys building birdhouses from scrap lumber that a friend provides him. These, too, often end up with friends and neighbors. In fact, two of Richard’s birdhouses can be found hanging in the garden at Trinity Episcopal Church.
But that’s not where the Williamses’ giving ends. Richard brings a woman with him to the pantry every time he visits. The woman, a neighbor, has several children at home, not enough income to feed them, and no transportation. Richard’s neighbor doesn’t speak English, and Richard doesn’t speak Spanish – but need is a universal language. So, too, is caring.