LeWayne Jones has spent the past two decades delivering food and hope to Second Harvest Food Bank Partner Agencies. He says being a Second Harvest driver is much more than getting product from point A to point B. Instead, it’s about building lasting relationships throughout the community and making an impact in the lives of the people Second Harvest serves.
How long have you worked for Second Harvest, what is your role, and describe a typical day?
I have been a truck driver at Second Harvest for 20 years. During a typical day for me, I arrive at the food bank at 5:00 AM and begin loading up the product. I then head out and make food deliveries to our Partner Agencies – churches, Emergency Food Box sites, and community centers. Afterwards, I will pick up food donations from our retail and grocery partners and bring that back to the Second Harvest. I often take loads back and forth between our Nashville and Smyrna distribution centers.
What do you enjoy most about working for a local hunger-relief organization?
The best thing about my job, and the reason why I’m still here after 20 years, is the relationships that I have built with our Partner Agencies and their volunteers. This is very different from a normal truck driving job, where you just bump a dock, sign a paper, and never really know what you are hauling. At Second Harvest, it’s totally different. We build relationships with the Partner Agencies we deliver to. In my experience, it has led to lifelong friendships.
What is one of your favorite memories of working at the food bank?
There are so many. Recently, I was shopping at Kroger afterwork when a man in his mid-twenties approached me in the parking lot. He called me the “food man.” When I asked him how we knew each other, he explained that when he was a little boy, his mother would take him to the Bethlehem Center to pick up food when they were having a hard time. This was close to 18 years ago and he recognized me as the person who delivered the food. It really touched me, to think that after all this time, this young man still remembers me and how I played a part in helping his family. It’s moments like this when you truly realize you are making a difference.
When you are not working, what do you like to do in your spare time?
I love the Titans and am a big sports fan. We also follow TSU Football and try to travel to as many games as we can. I also love attending custom car shows. Most of all, I love spending time with my wife, my kids, and my two-year-old granddaughter.