Local News

Meals on Wheels Presses On After Stabbings

Posted October 22, 2007 12:23 p.m. EDT
Updated October 24, 2007 6:13 a.m. EDT

— Volunteers took hot food door to door in Rocky Mount on Monday, keeping the Meals on Wheels charity rolling four days after a drifter stabbed two of its staff members, killing one.

Deborah Kornegay, the director of Meals on Wheels, and Eve Beasley, the assistant director, were packing meals at the Lakeside Baptist Church on Oct. 19. A man entered the kitchen and stabbed them multiple times, police said.

Kornegay, 58, died of her wounds. Beasley, 60, was taken to Pitt Memorial Hospital, where she remained Monday evening.

"We will absolutely honor their dedication and do what we can to carry that on," Marianne Farris, chairwoman of Meals on Wheels's board of directors, said.

After the attack, Meals on Wheels relocated its headquarters down the street to First Presbyterian Church. The Rocky Mount charity relies on volunteers to delver nine different routes and feed about 90 people a day.

Despite some trepidations about safety, those volunteers showed up on Monday.

"Logistically, we've had a lot of challenges, but we're tying to feel our way through, and people are being so cooperative and helpful," Farris said.

At nearly every stop, meal recipients offered prayers and words of support, one volunteer said.

"We all do it because we want to help. And certainly, we want to help after this tragedy," said Joe Brown, who delivered meals with his wife, Julia Brown.

Police arrested Tommy Lee Holiday, 30, for the stabbing attacks. He was being held without bond in the Nash County jail before his first court appearance on Tuesday.

With the arrest made, Farris said she expects that volunteers will continue to be able to keep going despite their safety concerns.

"I think there are some honest hesitations, but I hope that as we carry on and continue, people will feel that it was such a random thing that they are not in danger," she said.