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Athens family, volunteers serve 1,300 free Thanksgiving dinners

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ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) - Wednesday we introduced you to Roxanne Haggermaker and her family who were cooking a traditional Thanksgiving dinner for more than a thousand people. Well Thursday, there was a problem. Within a half-hour of opening the doors, they were already running out of food. Not to worry though, everyone was fed, thanks to the generosity of another man... And you may be surprised to find out who it was.

Despite all the planning, the shopping, the donations, the cooking and the preparations, it just wasn't enough.

"We delivered about 500. and we were, we were out of food by 20 after 11, we were out of food," Roxanne Haggermaker explained.

Roxanne says she thought the day was going to turn into a disaster. And then one of the many volunteers who was there to help serve, dashed out the door. When he came back, he had enough turkey, ham, chicken, vegetables and even cranberry sauce to feed a small army. Their benefactor: none other than Athens Mayor Ronnie Marks. He and several other volunteers stepped up to make certain this Thanksgiving would not be remembered for a lack of food. And everyone was grateful for what they had.

"I'm grateful for my family and the food I have," said 6-year old Isaiah Powers.

With some 500 meals delivered, roughly 800 more walked in during the day and they, too, all had a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

"Some people don't have family and they get the chance to eat and have fun on Thanksgiving," said Haley Haggermaker.

Celebrating not just the meal but the meaning of the day, this Thanksgiving in Athens.

In all, the volunteers say they served at least 1,300 people today. And Roxanne says yes, they'll do it again next year.