34 years and counting for Medina man as Meals on Wheels driver

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 17 September 2022 at 11:03 am

David Bogden delivers the meals after morning chores at his farm

Photos by Ginny Kropf: David Bogden of Medina loads his car with containers of hot and cold food for delivery to Meals on Wheels recipients.

MEDINA – David Bogden was still farming full time when he saw an ad in the paper for drivers for Meals on Wheels.

That was 34 years ago.

Bogden was working on the family’s 700-acre farm at the time, milking 72 cows and also hauling fertilizer. But the cows were milked early in the morning and late in the afternoon and he figured he could spare a couple of hours around lunch time to help out. And he could always use the extra money.

So he called Nutrifair in Albion and the woman who answered said she needed him quick. He went right down, and that started what would become a 34-year routine, that continues today.

His route takes him to 12 homes in Shelby, West Shelby, part of Ridge Road and the muck. It covers about 48 miles and takes about two hours, Bogden said.

He still farms 100 acres and raises 30 head of beef cattle on his farm north of Medina, but he looks forward to his job at Nutrifair.

David Bogden of Medina gets his containers of meals at Nutrifair in Albion, ready to begin his 48-mile route. He has been a driver for Meals on Wheels for 34 years.

Meals on Wheels in both Orleans and Genesee counties is praised as being not only beneficial for providing nutritional meals to seniors and/or shut-ins, but as sometimes being a vital contact with the outside world for seniors who are alone or have no relatives in the area.

Bogden’s experiences are proof of that. He has found three clients deceased. Another woman was confused and couldn’t talk, so 911 was called to send an ambulance, and another time he found a man who got stuck under his bed and pulled him out.

Vicki Havholm, nutrition program coordinator at Nutrifair, said Bogden is their longest running driver in the history of the Meals on Wheels program. Nutrifair is run by the Arc GLOW.

Meals on Wheels delivers to about 128 homes, five days a week. They provide a hot and cold meal for a suggested donation of $3.50 a day, and they always need drivers, Havholm said.

The program operates with six paid drivers and only one volunteer driver. They also get help daily from the Arc.

Havholm said they used to have a very successful meal program at the Nutrifair site in the old Albion Academy, but people haven’t been coming on site for their meals. She said the meal site in Kendall is thriving and there is always great response to the Spring Jubilee and the Nutrifair lunch annually at the fairgrounds.