Free Grab-and-Go lunches for senior citizens

Messenger photos by Theresa Hennis
Kathleen Marshall of London fills out a one-time application for free meals at LifeCare Alliance’s Grab-and-Go site at First Presbyterian Church in London.

(Posted Sept. 28, 2020)

Theresa Hennis, Staff Writer

There really is such a thing as a free lunch.

Thanks to LifeCare Alliance, the Meals-on-Wheels provider for Madison County, anyone 60 or older is eligible to pick up free Grab-and-Go meals every Friday through October. The meals are distributed between 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., weather permitting, at First Presbyterian Church, 211 Garfield Ave., London. Participants stay in their cars, and the meals are brought to them.

Madison County Meals-on-Wheels coordinator Leah Baird was on hand at the Sept. 25 distribution.

Leah Baird, Madison County Meals on Wheels coordinator, organizes Grab-and-Go meals for senior citizens to pick up at First Presbyterian Church in London.

“We still do the Meals-on-Wheels delivery, but the dining centers… had to close down because of COVID,” Baird said. “As far as these pop-up dining centers, we want everyone to understand the meals are for anyone over the age of 60, and if they’d like, they can give a donation.”

On Sept. 25, Seth Van Valkenburg, LifeCare Alliance community and client manager, helped to pull crates with meals out of the L.A. Catering van, the company that makes the meals. Valkenburg and Baird greeted seniors, who stayed in their cars, and distributed one-time applications for them to fill out, as well as two meals per senior listed in the household.

On this occasion, the two meals included a microwaveable meal of lasagna, garlic toast, green beans, a drink and fruit, and a cold meal including a turkey-and-cheese sandwich, chips, a drink and fruit.

Leah Baird, Madison County Meals on Wheels coordinator, hands a Grab-and-Go meal to London resident Jim Donohoe.

“This is my first time here,” said Kathleen Marshall of London, who picked up meals on Sept. 25. “I hate going into the stores. There’s little to no contact with this drive-up and go. I’m on a limited income, so this broadens my variety of eating choices.”

Jim Donohoe of London, another Grab-and-Go customer, commented, “These meals save you at least two meals a week on your costs and the time that it takes to prepare them. They’ve been really good. The pick-up is fast and convenient. I’ve been here three times and gone right through in a matter of minutes.”

For more information, contact Seth Van Valkenburg at (614) 437-2850 or

Seth Van Valkenburg, LifeCare Alliance community and client manager, pulls crates of Grab-and-Go meals out of the L.A. Catering van.
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