Robert Bruce (center) receives his award for Volunteer of the Year at the Andrews Chamber of Commerce dinner April 25 from Anthony El-Khouri and Barbara El-Khouri. The award is named after their father, Joe El-Khouri, who was well known for helping others.

Local man gives two decades of service to food bank

    At 83 years old, Robert Bruce volunteers several hours each week unloading trailers, organizing shelves and restocking supplies for the Cherokee County Food Bank in Andrews.
    Having volunteered for more than 20 years at the food bank, it’s no surprise that he received the 2016 Joe El-Khouri Volunteer Award during the annual Andrews Chamber of Commerce Awards Dinner on April 25.
    Barbara El-Khouri said she asked her family to nominate Bruce because of his longtime efforts at the food bank.
    “He’s excellent,” she said. “If you try to help him, he doesn’t want it. All the women come in here and hug him. It’s like their day isn’t made unless they talk to Robert.”
    Every Tuesday and Saturday, Bruce spends hours volunteering at the food bank in Andrews, and on Mondays he helps unload the truck when Walmart donates food. He also shows up around three times a month to help with the Manna Food Bank drop off.
    “He’s here every time the door is open,” food bank volunteer Milburn Miller said. “It doesn’t matter if a truck is coming in, he’s always here. He even works when he’s sick.”
    One of the food bank’s directors, Frank Jones, said in the 15 years he has helped at the facility, Bruce has never missed a day unless there was a family emergency.
    “I enjoy volunteering and talking to people here,” Bruce said. “I was always taught if you can do something, keep with it. I’ve always worked all my life.”
    Since he was young, Bruce has volunteered for the community, including fighting fires with the Andrews Rescue Squad. His love for volunteering was passed down to his son, who also is on the rescue squad.

The Andrews Journal

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