August 27, 2013
On Monday, August 26th, two New York Mets players made a special delivery to New York City’s homebound elderly. Starting pitcher Jonathon Niese and pitcher Scott Rice, donning their team jerseys, met at Florence E. Smith Senior Services in Corona, Queens, and then set out to deliver Citymeals Labor Day boxes to meal recipients. The packages contained the equivalent of three shelf-stable meals and include items such as salmon and tuna, mixed vegetables, low sugar cookies, City Wheats crackers, organic brown rice, powdered milk, coffee and tea. Each year, Citymeals provides Labor Day boxes to ensure frail aged are nourished during the long holiday weekend when meal centers are closed.
Hours before their game at Citi Field, Niese and Rice distributed the boxes of non-perishable food in Flushing. One of the meal recipients they met was 87-year-old Bruno. He has lived in the same home for over fifty years and was overjoyed by the visit from players on his favorite team. The pitchers signed his baseballs and presented him with Mets memorabilia, making for a moment he will not soon forget.
Executive Director Beth Shapiro stated, “As many of us look forward to taking a little rest this Labor Day, we must remember all of our vulnerable and all too often ‘invisible’ neighbors who worked so hard to help build this great City. I would like to thank the New York Mets and the caring players here today. What a treat for our meal recipients to open the door and see these hometown heroes.”
In total, Citymeals will deliver nearly 15,000 boxes for the Labor Day weekend.