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Donations, offers of help pour in for starving veteran who called 911 for food

Clarence Blackmon (Photo Source: WTVD) Clarence Blackmon (Photo Source: WTVD)
FAYETTEVILLE, NC (WTVD/CNN) - People across the Carolinas and as far away as California and even Canada have asked how they can help the North Carolina veteran who called 911 for food.

Clarence Blackmon called 911 Tuesday night and begged dispatchers to bring him food. His desperate plea then became a news headline.

Good Samaritans from all over are making sure he has food on the table.

"Ohhhh, boy.... I love cucumbers, especially off the vine," Blackmon says.

Blackmon's phone hasn't stopped ringing because of people offering food and help.

"Cabbage and pork sausage today, The only one is baked chicken, with fresh cucumbers and tomatoes," Blackmon says.

That joy was a far cry from his desperate call for help.

"What I need is someone to get to the grocery store and bring me some food because I need to eat something," he told a 911 operator on Tuesday.

Blackmon had spent months in the hospital for cancer treatment and rehabilitation, then returned to his Fayetteville home with no food, no water, and no way to get either.

The 911 operator who took the call, along with Fayetteville police, delivered groceries in person. And offers from people who heard of Blackmon's plight offered help.

It went from an empty refrigerator on Tuesday to counter tops and shelves overflowing with food 24 hours later.

"We had numerous calls, emails, folks calling us directly, calling the call center, calling 911 saying, 'How can we help Mr. Blackmon?'" Fayetteville Police Officer Antoine Kincade said.

Many of also wanted to know Blackmon could wind up in this situation.

The North Carolina DSS director said the agency was not even aware of Blackmon's plight. Apparently, the private rehab center that discharged Blackmon failed to notify DSS officials he was going home.

A DSS social worker spent several hours Wednesday with Blackmon. They are now taking care of his needs.

As for the donations, Blackmon asked that they go to the Salvation Army to help others.

"I want everyone that goes hungry, or lives under a bridge, at least they can go to the Salvation Army. They may have to listen to their sermon, but they get their food," Blackmon said.

Blackmon said he's truly thankful for the outpouring of assistance.

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