LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — When Jake Bland, with Hometown Hauling, noticed a woman hadn't put out trash in more than two weeks, he knew something was off.
Instead of ignoring the small observation, Bland, the company's operations manager, asked dispatch to call the customer.
Bernice Arthur took Bland's call and immediately searched for the woman's information. What Arthur learned about the 90-year-old woman devastated her.
"She just didn't have nothing to eat," Arthur said, "and that's why she had no trash to put out there."
For more than two weeks, the elderly woman had no way to leave her home or get groceries amid the COVID-19 pandemic. She was running out of food, and Hometown Hauling decided it wanted to help.
"She has no family, nobody," Arthur said. "I said, 'You do have a family now.'"
Bland helped compile a list of groceries and went shopping. He then personally delivered the groceries to the woman, whom they call "Mrs. W."
The local garbage company paid for everything.
"It was even in a nice neighborhood," Bland said. "You never know what's going on in your neighbor's house."
Many elderly folks have struggled getting food during the pandemic, according to the Louisville Metro Office of Resilience and Community Service.
Bland and Arthur played a pivotal role in potentially saving the woman's life, and they hope their story serves as a reminder to check on loved ones in any way possible.
"Had we not reached out to her — she wasn't reaching out to anyone," Arthur said. "It taught me, regardless, check on them. Put something on their porch. Let them know."
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