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United Way gets helping hands for Day of Caring

September 01, 1999

Day of CaringBy BRENDAN KIRBY / Staff Writer

photos: KEVIN G. GILBERT / staff photographe




They painted. They cleaned. They spackled.

An army of United Way volunteers fanned out to member agencies throughout Hagerstown on Wednesday in the eighth "Day of Caring."

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"We're just doing whatever we can to help," said Matt Weaver, a Farmers & Merchants Bank and Trust employee who was one of the volunteers painting steps at the United Way headquarters on Potomac Avenue.

Weaver and two other bank employees packed supplies at the American Red Cross before heading over to the United Way offices.

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"We were, I guess, lucky enough to help out with more than one," he said.

James G. Pierne, the bank's chief operating officer, also wielded a paint brush Wednesday morning.

How long did he expect the job to take?

"With the competence of the help I have, I think it will take the whole holiday weekend," he joked.

Working alongside the F&M Bank employees were several employees of Callas Contractors.

Day of Caring"This is all volunteer," said Brian Sellers, who was supervising a sidewalk repair job on Hillcrest Street next to the United Way office.

Sellers and his crew spent two days before the Day of Caring preparing the area so they could pour the concrete to form a new sidewalk.

He estimated the final touches would take a few more hours.

"We've got a real nice day to do it," Sellers said. "It really makes you feel nice."

At Hospice of Washington County, it was a different task, similar result.

Volunteers from the Washington County employment office gave the Baltimore Street office a thorough fall cleaning.

"It's probably never seen such a cleaning," said Susan Taylor, executive director of Hospice.

Taylor said some of the volunteers mopped the floors, cleaned the kitchen and bathrooms and polished the banisters. Others washed the windows and cleaned up the outside of the building.

Joan Hawbaker, an unemployment insurance specialist, said she chose Hospice because she feels especially grateful to the organization, which attempts to comfort terminally ill patients in their final months.

"I've done it because the agencies that are involved do so much for the community. I wanted to give something back," she said. "I would be willing to do anything that Hospice asked."

For Bill Andersen, a veterans' employment consultant, this was his first Day of Caring as a volunteer. He said helping out in the community is a natural extension of his regular job at the employment agency.

"We're in the service business to begin with," he said. "We sort of have an inclination to provide service."

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