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Published November 26, 2010, 08:04 PM

Volunteer Gives Back to an Organization That Helped Him

One Grand Forks man is helping others despite having an illness that usually keeps him at home. He says helping others helps him be active.

One Grand Forks man is helping others despite having an illness that usually keeps him at home. He says helping others helps him be active.

Larry Rhoades had help from the Salvation Army when he was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease almost 10 years ago.

Now he wants to give back.

"They've helped me with groceries, they've helped me with clothing." Rhoades said.

Rhoades was diagnosed with COPD, a disease which narrows a person's airways, in 2000. The disease makes breathing a challenge.

"It slows me down, I carry oxygen around with me all the time. I'm on it 24 hours a day and I don't jog anymore," Rhoades said.

Although Larry may not be able to run, he is more than able to help out an organization like the Salvation Army after all they have done for him.

"When I first got sick with this COPD that I have and I couldn't work, I didn't have social security then. They helped me out quite a bit."

The Salvation Army hopes to raise $20,000 this year with bell-ringers around town. It's just part of their efforts to help others in similar situations.

"There's still a need and we're able to catch a lot of people that fall through the cracks for other programs in the community," Major Harold Baugh said.

The money raised not only goes for helping people during the holidays but all year long. A reason Rhoades has lent a helping hand for the past 6 years.

"It just gives me goosebumps when people give and they give and they give and they don't stop giving because there's a lot of people that really need it," Rhoades said.

The Salvation Army is still looking for volunteers to help out through the end of December.

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