Summerside postal workers honour late colleague with annual food drive
Postal workers in Summerside are collecting donations from doorsteps Saturday
This year's annual Prince County Postal Worker's Food Drive is being renamed in honour of a Summerside postal worker who passed away earlier this year.
Over 30 years ago, Summerside postal worker Myles Birch realized there were many hungry families in need and began the annual food drive.
Birch continued to run the annual postal worker's food drive every year until he died in February at the age of 67.
"He was a wonderful man, they used to dress him up as Santa Claus and he would go out into the community at Christmas," says Scott Gaudet, a postal worker in Summerside.
"He was really somebody that really cared — he was a great mentor to me, he passed the torch on."
Postal workers collecting Saturday
To carry on the life and memory of Birch, Gaudet decided to rename the food drive to the first Myles Birch Memorial Postal Worker's Food Drive.
"We thought, this year, it would be great to memorialize his death, and what he did for the community, by renaming the food drive," he said.
People in Summerside can expect to see Gaudet and the postal worker fleet take to the streets on Saturday to fill their cars with donations.
"We fill our cars probably twice on each route, so a letter carrier takes his own route and you'd fill the trunk and the back seat of your car probably at least two times."
Donations are also being accepted at post office's throughout Prince County and at the Salvation Army in Summerside.
Expecting around 24,000 pounds in donations
Gaudet is expecting to about 24,000 pounds of food in donations.
So far, they've received 4,000 pounds in "early bird" donations, but Friday and Saturday collections are the big draw for food items, he said.
If you're living in Summerside, postal workers are asking for non-perishable donations to be left on your doorstep around 9 a.m Saturday morning.
They're particularly looking for food items for school lunches, such as granola bars and fruit chews, or anything that doesn't have to go in the fridge or freezer.
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With files from Laura Chapin