Outpouring of love for vet who called 911 needing food

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FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — An Army veteran’s story went viral on Thursday after he called police- not because he was hurt, but because he needed food.

According to reports from the Washington Post,  81-year-old Clarence Blackmon battled prostate cancer for the past year at a hospital and rehab facility.

When he returned home, the fridge was empty.

Reports indicate, the facility where Blackmon was staying failed to notify anyone that he was being discharged.

With no family nearby and very limited mobility, Blackmon decided to do the only thing he could think of: call 911.

“What I need is someone to get to the grocery store and bring me some food because I need to eat something,” he told the dispatcher on the other end of the line. “Whatever you can do to help. I can’t do anything. I can’t go anywhere.”

Without hesitation, the dispatcher, Marilyn Hinson, scribbled down his grocery list: cabbage, two bananas, a can of beets, green beans, tomato juice, three Pepsis, some ham and popcorn.

He said he would pay her back.

Hinson and several Fayetteville Police Officers delivered the food and stayed to help him make a couple of sandwiches.

“He was hungry,” Hinson told reporters. “I’ve been hungry. A lot of people can’t say that, but I can, and I can’t stand for anyone to be hungry.”

Blackmon said he was just thankful to have someone there.

“It was like a little miracle ringing in my ear. I thought, ‘Jesus, you’ve answered all those prayer,'” he said.

And those blessings kept coming.

After his story aired, people began calling the police concerned, and wondering what they could do to help.

Reportedly there was so much food, Blackmon decided to give it to others in need by donating it to the Salvation Army.

Now, Blackmon is at home resting, with more than enough visitors and food to last him a long time.


Like Blackmon, many people in the bluff city go hungry each and every day.

If you or someone you know needs help, please check out the resources below.


The United Way of the Mid-South

MIFA’s Meals on Wheels

Mid-South Food Bank for Seniors

Mid-South Food Bank for Families

North Delta Area Agency on Aging

Olive Branch Community Emergency Food Ministry: Call (662) 895-2913

Heartland Church: Call (662) 393-6439

Full List of Desoto County Emergency Food Pantries

Arkansas Food Bank List



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