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Wiley College in Marshall aims to fill its charter bus with food

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Wiley College students in Marshall aim to donate 15,000 meals to the East Texas Food Bank Friday as part of the third annual Fill the Bus Food Drive.

Students in the criminal justice honor society, Alpha Phi Sigma, are putting on the four-hour event to gather nonperishable food and monetary donations for the food bank.

Wiley’s criminal justice instructor Michael Champion says the bus helps the students set fundraising goals by filling the bus seat by seat through business sponsorships and bags of food.

“We looked at our school’s charter bus, and there are 52 seats. We figured if we could get food to fill that complete charter bus, it would be a healthy donation. That’s how we came up with the idea,” Champion said.

The East Texas Food Bank, based in Tyler, serves 26 counties and serves nearly 253,000 clients. Wiley senior Ro’Shunda Wilson of Karnack, Texas, started the fundraiser. She says the food bank is grateful that Marshall residents are pulling together on this effort.

“Marshall’s a small town. That was what the food bank was astonished by that a community came together to give to multiple communities, because the East Texas Food Bank isn’t just focused on Marshall,” Wilson said.

The Fill the Bus Food Drive is set for noon to 4 p.m. Friday in the parking lot of the Wiley Pemberton Complex.

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