She popped the trunk, and as staff from the News-Argus began to unload multiple boxes -- one after the other -- Grundmeier smiled.

"We are big donators," she said. She said her husband, Kevin, also takes an active role in giving back to the community.

"Today I brought some backpacks, pens, flash drives and calculators."

Cornelia says she and Kevin support multiple charities in the community that benefit children -- from Stuff the Bus to the Empty Stocking Fund to Toys for Tots to donating to the domestic violence center to helping foster children.

"We just pick stuff up when we see deals while we are shopping," she said.

"We collect all year, our attic is filling up now."

She laughs as she clutches a back full of ball point pens and hands them over to be put in the bus.

She makes her way back to her car -- the trunk a little lighter -- to go to the Community Soup Kitchen and offer another helping hand.


Tyler Edmundson sat on the passenger side of the SUV as Debra Newman drove up in the News-Argus parking lot for the Stuff the Bus campaign.

Debra said Tyler wanted to unload the donations.

And Tyler was all business. He hopped out of the SUV, went to the back and grabbed several bags full of school supplies out of the back.

"(I'm here) to help the schools in Wayne County," he said.

"To help the students get more school supplies. I like to do it."

Debra, who works with Tyler, said he had asked her earlier to take him to a store and get things to purchase to donate to the Stuff the Bus campaign.

"He really wanted to put this on the bus," she said with a proud smile.

When Tyler loaded up the bus, he hustled back to the SUV and they drove away -- satisfied that he had accomplished his mission for the day.


Lynette Smith pulled up to the News-Argus parking lot in a black SUV and rolled her window down with a smile on her face.

"I hope you are strong," she said, "because these are heavy."

She was referring to the boxes in the back of her car loaded with notebooks and supplies.

As the News-Argus staff carried three boxes to the bus, she smiled the whole time.

"My daughter is in the Navy, my son has special needs, and they don't go to school anymore," she said.

"I truly believe in helping the community."

With a broad grin she meaningfully said, "I have been blessed, and I am passing that on to other people."


Sudie Davis has been an advocate for the children in Wayne County for more than 20 years, and every year she donates to the Stuff the Bus campaign.

Friday, she pulled up to the News-Argus parking lot, got out and began the work of unloading her donations.

Work she is not unaccustomed to throughout the years -- another task for the children.

In 1992, she began the task force to get the national program of Communities in Schools in Wayne County -- which is the program that sponsored Stuff the Bus for years. Sudie served as executive director for the organization until November of 2001 before she retired.

Though the name changed to Communities Supporting Schools in Wayne County this year, the premise of the organization is still the same -- helping students in the county excel and graduate.

Sudie said the need is as strong as ever.

"When I started, children living in poverty was at 24 percent in the county," she said.

"The last time I looked it was at 34 percent. The need is greater than ever."

As she talked about the success of the campaign -- around 2 p.m. the bus was filling up with supplies nicely -- she smiled and said watching the program grow has been a joy.

"I like hanging around because I like to see the people donate," she said.