Sequim Food Bank leaders, executive director Andra Smith, on left, and volunteer Stephen Rosales, right, hand the keys of the facility’s longtime delivery truck to Mary Budke, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula on Nov. 8. Budke said they’ll use it to pickup large donations and transfer items between the Sequim and Port Angeles units. Sequim Gazette photo by Matthew Nash

Sequim Food Bank leaders, executive director Andra Smith, on left, and volunteer Stephen Rosales, right, hand the keys of the facility’s longtime delivery truck to Mary Budke, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula on Nov. 8. Budke said they’ll use it to pickup large donations and transfer items between the Sequim and Port Angeles units. Sequim Gazette photo by Matthew Nash

Storied truck passes from Food Bank to BG Clubs

Along with carrying countless tons of groceries in its 15-plus years, the Sequim Food Bank’s truck helped move a restaurant, a few police officers, items for local foster children and churches, and thousands of boxes of Girl Scout cookies.

Now, the truck passes from one community-first agency to another.

On Monday, Nov. 8, Sequim Food Bank’s leaders signed over the title and passed on the keys for the longtime delivery truck to the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula.

“I’m proud that the community paid for it and the community used it,” said Stephen Rosales, a longtime volunteer between the two agencies.

“It’s stayed a community truck.”

When he moved to Sequim in 2005, Rosales said, the late Nina Fatherson and her husband Bill would make at least five trips daily to local grocery stores in their personal truck for the food bank. So Rosales called the newspapers and their writers wrote about the need for a new truck, and within three weeks the food bank raised about $35,000 for a dedicated delivery truck.

“One guy wrote a $4,000 check because he said the food bank helped him out before and he could help now,” Rosales said.

Food Bank officials bought the truck from Ruddell Auto, and a few weeks later the Sequim Sunrise Rotary, with help from the late Bryce Fish, bought a $5,000 lift for it.

With more than 100,000 miles put on it, Rosales said the truck has held up well; its biggest issue was having gas stolen from it and various hoses being cut because of theft.

Andra Smith, executive director of the Sequim Food Bank, said during the COVID-19 pandemic, food needs increased dramatically, with one weekly pickup in Port Angeles increasing to at least six a week. The facility outgrew the truck’s capacity.

With assistance through the Washington State Department of Agriculture, Sequim Food Bank officials bought a brand new delivery truck that’s larger and holds heavier loads, Smith said.

“If somebody needed the truck, over the years we’ve shared, and the club borrowed it the most so it just worked out well,” she said.

Mary Budke, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula, said they’ll use it to transfer larger items between the Sequim and Port Angeles units, and pick up donations and large food runs for programs.

Rosales said the club used it to pick up donations many times before, such as televisions, a pool table and even an air hockey table in Gig Harbor.

Sequim Food Bank, 144 Alder St., is open 1-4 p.m. on Mondays, and 9 a.m.-noon on Fridays and Saturdays. Its Family Holiday Meal Bag Distribution runs 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 19 in Carrie Blake Community Park. Call 360-683-1205 for deliveries, questions.

The Sequim unit of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula, 400 W. Fir St., hosts its 33rd auction this weekend with bidding registration available at bgc-op.org. For more information about the clubs, call 360-683-8095.

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