Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Joel Rosenbaum | The Reporter Kevin Miller, public rRelations director for Mission Solano, talks about the theft of several hundred turkeys from their food pantry at their Community Outreach Center over the weekend. The turkey are used for their shelter's annual Thanksgiving food box give away which is scheduled for next week.
Thief takes 500 Thanksgiving turkeys from a homeless shelter
First Published Nov 21 2013 12:34 pm • Last Updated Nov 21 2013 01:47 pm

Fairfield, Calif. » It’s not often that a freezer can cause surprise, but that was the case for Mission Solano staff when they opened their freezer Monday to find hundreds of donated Thanksgiving turkeys had been stolen.

Every. Last. Bird.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

When Executive Director Ron Marlette first heard the words "We’ve got a problem," followed by the news of discovery, he thought it was a joke. Then as the news sank in, along with the realization of what the pilfered poultry could potentially mean for the thousands who benefit from Mission Solano’s 750 food boxes and annual Thanksgiving dinner, Marlette’s heart sank.

With November and December already marking Mission Solano’s busiest time of year, the shelter was a mere week away from its food box giveaway, which includes a turkey "and all the fixings," Marlette explained.

Still, despite the seemingly overwhelming obstacle of empty freezers, Marlette said they were not going to let the theft stop them in their mission and will instead bank on the generosity of the community to supply what is lacking.

"We’ve decided we’re not going to stop the giveaway. Solano County is a very generous community and they always step up. People have been bringing turkeys by all day today," he said Tuesday.

Marlette expressed his chagrin at the thieves who, he said, appeared to have gained access to the turkeys by prying open a back window at the Community Outreach Center on Sunday evening before making off with "a couple of hundred" birds.

"(Staff) came in on Monday and the window was open and the freezers were empty," he said.

"You can imagine our shock to arrive Monday and find that someone had stolen our turkeys," said Raymond Courtemanche, chief operations officer for Mission Solano. "Our staff was quite saddened to know this could mean hundreds within our community go without Thanksgiving dinner."

Throughout the 15 years and millions of meals Mission Solano has provided food to the homeless and hungry, Marlette said he’s never heard of someone stealing turkeys — which, he said, was "stealing hope out of people’s homes." Marlette mused at what the thieves could possibly do with that many birds, since "taking them to a pawn shop" isn’t exactly a viable option.


story continues below
story continues below

Since the heist, Marlette said the shelter has been fielding calls from those concerned about not getting their Thanksgiving dinner. Rest assured, he said, "Everybody who signed up will get something."

The shelter will also proceed with its annual Thanksgiving Day dinner, which can feed more than 1,000, at the Fairfield Community Center.

Marlette is urging any and all community members to donate as they are able. "We can use whatever they can do to help."

"Traditionally, we serve more people at Thanksgiving than at any other meal of the year," Marlette said. "The needs in Solano County and across the country continue to grow; our holiday dinner is where the most lonely and vulnerable citizens of the community are welcome guests."

According to Marlette, there is no better feeling than for volunteers to pull together and make a difference by coming together to benefit the community.

The food box giveaway is scheduled to take place Tuesday at the Community Outreach Center, and according to Marlette, hundreds of families are already signed up for meals.

Turkeys can be dropped of at any of Mission Solano’s locations in Fairfield. For more information, visit the shelter’s website: missionsolano.org.

"We’ve got some work to do," Marlette said. "And we’ll do it."



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.