A healthier lifestyle thanks to Meals on Wheels
Meet Phillip Riddle, one of our Meals on Wheels participants. Here’s his story in his own words.
“I’m originally from Atlanta and moved to Athens in high school. After graduation, I went to college and then entered the Air Force. The many experiences I had there not only educated me about people and the world but also gave me a clearer understanding of who I was. Eventually I came back to Atlanta and worked for the United States Postal Service and later the IRS.
“My first experience with Meals on Wheels was when my mom started receiving them. I had moved back to Athens when she became ill so I could assist her. I watched how the program helped not only her but also so many of her peers that lived in the area.
“I was a very active person. I was a tennis coach, softball coach and basketball coach for both the school system and the leisure services department for Athens-Clarke County Government. I wanted to expose our young people in underprivileged communities, who wouldn’t have exposure to sports other than football and basketball, to different sports.
“After my mom passed away, I went from being an active person who weighed 180 pounds to an inactive person at 248 pounds. As a result of this, I gained certain health issues, hypertension being one of them. I also have COPD along with my disability from the military.
“I became a Meals on Wheels participant, which has been a Godsend for me. The program, along with my determination to get healthier, has helped improve both my eating habits as well as my physical activities. Through the planned meals and a new exercise routine I am down to 201 pounds and striving to get back to 180 again.
“I have recommended Meals on Wheels to most of my peers who, for some reason or another, can’t make a balanced meal each day. I truly think it’s a great program and would recommend it to not just to seniors but to anyone who is limited in the things they can accomplish each day.
“I want to thank the staff and the volunteers who have made my experience with the Meals on Wheels program truly a blessing in my life. Once again, thank you not only for the meals but also for the service you bring to the community.”