Search + Rescue Birthday Barbeque


On Sunday, April 2nd, the Search + Rescue team had a special mission to fulfill for a houseless friend, Robert, on his 60th birthday.

“After doing our full route, we showed up at this camp with our propane grill, hamburgers, full length hot dogs, hot links, potato salad, and all the fixin’s for the birthday celebration. We also came bearing gifts for Robert. Lori, Union Gospel Mission’s food service coordinator had prepared all the food.  When we arrived we pulled out the grill to prepare the feast. We yelled out ‘Union Gospel Mission Search+Rescue.’  Out from the wooded area came Pauline with her small dog Chico, who nuzzled down in her jacket, Laura, Mike, and from the roadway came Robert riding his bike,”James recalled. James is one of the residents of LifeChange who serves regularly with Search + Rescue.  Here, James tells the rest of the story of the special birthday barbeque for Robert:   

“Everyone was so excited to see us and we were just as excited to see them. As I started laying the burgers on the grill, every one was hugging each other and talking about what had went on in their lives the week prior. As we were eating and talking two more guests showed up and ask if they could join in on the festivities. Of course we gladly said yes, come on and relax with us. What a lovely night to break bread with our friends. The talking continued for about an hour or so. When every one finished eating, I asked Pauline to keep Robert busy while the Search+Rescue crew went to the van and lit the candles on the homemade chocolate cake, prepared by Lori. Out we came from the van singing ‘Happy Birthday’ to Robert.

                The look on his face was priceless. As the cake was served, out came the gifts. First came camo pants, then a camo hat, then came a soft fleece jacket, and candles which was purchased by Eric and his family, one of the Search+Rescue members.

                    After the clean up and before departing from our friends, Robert said to us he wanted to pray for us aprayer he had written. In the prayer he stated we were Guardian Angels sent to him by God. There wasn't a dry eye in the prayer circle. After the prayer, we said our goodbyes and all hugged, and departed saying until next week.”