Couple honored for service
For 20 of their 50 years together, Richard and Annette Rush have volunteered for the Meals on Wheels program at their church.
On Feb. 14, the Grove City couple will be honored for their efforts by Gov. John Kasich during a ceremony in Columbus.
Ohio first lady Karen Waldbillig Kasich and the Ohio Department of Aging will honor 17 couples for their dedication to marriage and volunteerism at the 13th annual Joined Hearts in Giving celebration.
The program honors Ohioans who have been married 40 years or longer and who share a commitment to volunteerism and community service.
The Rushes have volunteered at the Meals on Wheels program at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Grove City ever since a church coordinator approached Annette Rush about it.
“We had the time, and we enjoyed doing it,” Richard Rush said.
Richard and Annette Rush, 75 and 73 respectively, are responsible for making sure two Meals on Wheels delivery routes in Grove City are covered every Friday. Annette Rush coordinates, calling church contacts to schedule two two-person teams to handle delivery routes.
Richard Rush said meal deliveries give him something to do. He enjoys seeing the gratitude on people’s faces when he visits.
The Rushes met during a Sunday school picnic. They were married Nov. 12, 1961, when Richard was 25 and Annette was 23. They have a daughter, Laura, who is 48. Before they retired, Richard worked as a soil conservationist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture while Annette worked as a cook at the South-Western City School District.
The couple has been particularly instrumental in recruiting new Meals-on-Wheels volunteers at their church, said LifeCare Alliance director of volunteer services Pauli Tice.
Their long tenure as volunteers is “such a commitment,” she said. “It’s pretty remarkable.”
LifeCare Alliance has more than 4,000 Meals on Wheels volunteers serving Franklin and Madison counties.