David's Story 

01/24/2014

Four rows of folding chairs are filled with people patiently waiting at the Middlebury Chapel in Summit County. Families seated are reconnecting with friends and neighbors in the warm community room.

On the end of the last row is David Conley, sitting quietly alone.

"You know," David says slowly, "Thirty-seven years ago, I was married in this church. I've been coming here for years."

David was born and raised in this community, and two months ago, David had a house fire. His family was forced to move, and leave the home they loved.

Because of the fire, David is visiting his church for a new reason. He is here for the Chapel's food pantry.

"Recently, I had to choose between paying a gas bill and buying food," David said.

"I've only had to come [to the pantry] twice, and this place helps fill in the gaps when nothing else can."

David has a degree in culinary arts, and he's currently looking for a job. When asked what some of his favorite items are to receive from the food pantry, David replies, "I just love to cook. All the food is wonderful, and you should see what I can do with spices."

The Middlebury Chapel operates a food pantry, and is a member agency program of the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank. Today, the pantry receives nutritious grocery items including frozen meat, fresh breads and vegetables from the Foodbank.

David will receive more than food today at the food pantry. He will receive hope, and a way to continually show his family love— with the meals he will prepare.