30 years of giving away turkey dinners in Delaware

For the past thirty years, Norman Oliver has been helping feed the needy in Wilmington on Thanksgiving.  This year, he’s had more help than ever.


Row upon row of food boxes were stacked inside the offices of NOR Enterprises Tuesday as volunteers prepared to hand out the birds and other trimmings to needy seniors and other families in Wilmington.  Norman Oliver’s mission to feed the needy started in a much simpler fashion as he would bring food to people living underneath city bridges.

That humble start has transitioned into a must-do event for elected leaders (and wannabe elected leaders).  Today’s event was a who’s-who of Delaware politics with two out of three members of Delaware Congressional Delegation, state Attorney General Beau Biden, Wilmington Mayor James Baker, newly elected New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon, city council members and many more in attendance.

“This is incredible,” said Oliver about the turnout and the donations of so much food.  He says so many people in the city are struggling.  “It’s hard to figure out who to give turkeys to.  I don’t get into that.  I just want to help people.”

Senator Chris Coons said the drive is a great way to demonstrate the spirit of Thanksgiving.  “It’s a way to start the holiday season by being reminded both how good our community is, the incredible number of turkeys, and this year, winter coats that are being given away, but also it’s a sobering reminder of how many people in Wilmington and throughout New Castle County, Delaware are still in need.”

Congressman John Carney echoes his Senate colleague, “Regardless of how difficult times are, we have a lot to be thankful for.  This is a good way of showing how much we appreciate that by giving to other folks who need it more than we do.”

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