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Meeting the Needs

Retired state employee David Lilly stays busy as one of Owen County's most reliable volunteers


Sweet Owen Contributor

RETIRED STATE EMPLOYEE DAVID LILLY stays busy as one of Owen County’s most reliable volunteers. A member of the Owenton/Owen County Volunteer Fire Department, Owen County Search and Rescue Squad, and Grand Paws Search and Rescue, Lilly also chairs the Meeting the Needs Ministry Board. He can be found nearly seven days a week at Meeting the Needs preparing for the more than 300 individuals who receive commodities through the program. — Photos by Whitney Prather Duvall

Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church.



Rotary Club.

Volunteer Fire Department.

Search and Rescue.

Grand Paws Search and Rescue.

Meeting the Needs Ministry.

Retired EMT.

Now, take a breath. David Lilly might just be the busiest retiree there is.

If you ask Lilly about his volunteerism, he’ll likely credit someone else, like his parents and upbringing or all those who pitch in on the efforts he donates his time to.

“My mom and dad instilled in their kids the importance of giving back,” Lilly said. “I get along with people, and I suppose it’s a thing that encourages other people to do stuff, too. It’s not just me volunteering—I’m just a piece of the pie.”

Retired from state government, Lilly wasn’t content to sit back and relax; he felt a calling to help where he could, and that’s exactly what he does.

From assisting with music and audio-visual services at his church to holding various officer positions with local civic groups and rescue teams, Lilly said he truly enjoys the time he spends with each group and his interactions with others.

“Being a volunteer is not that hard,” Lilly said. “It’s just a matter of scheduling. With me, I’m retired, I’m free, and my kids are all out and working, so I’m able to volunteer. Seeing the joy people have when they come and pick up food they need. Being a firefighter, you see homes destroyed, but when you’re able to save things like family photos … It’s just the feeling of helping others and fulfilling their needs.”

David Lilly

One of his most recent endeavors is acting as chairman of the board for the Meeting the Needs Ministry. Meeting the Needs works with local churches and other organizations to donate food, hygiene products and commodities to people and families in need. It also acts as a hub to distribute food to seniors 60 years and older who participate in the Commodity Supplemental Food Program through the Northern Kentucky Area Development District.

Meeting the Needs also partners with Owen County Schools for their Power Pack program, which seeks to help alleviate childhood hunger by providing a backpack of easy-to-prepare food for students to take home each Friday afternoon to have over the weekend.

Although Meeting the Needs opens for pickup two days a week, Lilly is there Monday through Friday, boxing up food and preparing for the more than 300 individuals who cycle through on a regular basis, for senior commodity pickup or a supplemental food box.


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