East Texas sees record numbers seeking food help - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

East Texas sees record numbers seeking food help

By Holley Nees - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - At 81 years old with a bad leg, Martha Warren needs food assistance and she's not the only one.

"I meet quite a few in the same shape I'm in," said Martha Warren, of Christian Information and Service Center. "It's especially bad on the senior citizens."

"I've been unemployed and they're a great help because my wife has multiple sclerosis and when I'm working, I don't come here, but when I'm not, this is a great help," said David Wright, who is a CISC client.

CISC Executive Director Linda Smelley has helped feed the hungry for years, but watching people suffer doesn't get easier.

"I thought I was used to the hurt and it got to me yesterday," Smelley said. "It's hard what's happening."

About 200 new families register in Lufkin for help every month. They join nearly 200,000 East Texans that receive emergency food each year.

"And I say, I never cry, I never get upset, I just keep going, but yesterday was a real reality check, going in the house, seeing the food, and watching a woman who was 180 pounds and I took her to the hospital and she was 128 and this is in a year," Smelley said.

"As a registered dietician, it is really very disturbing because when there is insufficient nutrition there are a lot of adverse effects," said Carol Bradley, an East Texas Food Bank Board member. "It affects physical health, behavior, mental health and it makes it really hard for children to learn in school."

Last year, Smelley bought 1.5 million pounds of food. This year, she hopes things will get better.

"These people are really losing weight and becoming ill and I'm watching them die up here," Smelley said.

"I really need it. I'm not going to lie about it," Warren said.

©2010 KTRE. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

  • East Texas NewsMore>>

  • Best Furry Friends: Heeler-spaniel mix loves attention

    Best Furry Friends: Heeler-spaniel mix loves attention

    Thursday, July 20 2017 7:17 PM EDT2017-07-20 23:17:01 GMT

    Temporarily calling the Nacogdoches Animal Shelter a home, Remi is hoping to find something a little more permanent. Caretakers said the one-year-old dog is playful and loves attention. Remi was brought into the shelter as a stray about three weeks ago. "He gets along with the other dogs. He still in his puppy stage so he still has a lot of time to go around play with everyone," said Torion Johnson, animal control officer.  Remi is a heeler-spani...

    More >>

    Temporarily calling the Nacogdoches Animal Shelter a home, Remi is hoping to find something a little more permanent. Caretakers said the one-year-old dog is playful and loves attention. Remi was brought into the shelter as a stray about three weeks ago. "He gets along with the other dogs. He still in his puppy stage so he still has a lot of time to go around play with everyone," said Torion Johnson, animal control officer.  Remi is a heeler-spani...

    More >>
  • Lufkin welcomes back Cowboy's Dez Bryant

    Lufkin welcomes back Cowboy's Dez Bryant

    Thursday, July 20 2017 7:14 PM EDT2017-07-20 23:14:51 GMT

    Hundreds of East Texans, and other from farther away, were camped out at Kit McConnico Park since early this morning to see Cowboy's Dez Bryant.

    More >>

    Hundreds of East Texans, and other from farther away, were camped out at Kit McConnico Park since early this morning to see Cowboy's Dez Bryant.

    More >>
  • Students learn various methods in art camp at Museum of East Texas

    Students learn various methods in art camp at Museum of East Texas

    Thursday, July 20 2017 7:13 PM EDT2017-07-20 23:13:02 GMT

    The Museum of East Texas in Lufkin is continuing its tradition of hosting art classes for the 20th year in a row. Students learn various styles such as watercolor painting, drawing basics and clay. In addition, students explore the foundational concepts of art in a cool environment. "Some of these students haven't painted before, some of have, so when they start painting they start realizing how exciting it is to be able to put down colors and shapes and whatever they...

    More >>

    The Museum of East Texas in Lufkin is continuing its tradition of hosting art classes for the 20th year in a row. Students learn various styles such as watercolor painting, drawing basics and clay. In addition, students explore the foundational concepts of art in a cool environment. "Some of these students haven't painted before, some of have, so when they start painting they start realizing how exciting it is to be able to put down colors and shapes and whatever they...

    More >>
Powered by Frankly