Volunteer Spotlight


Sonny (Albert) Miller has been a Holmes County resident all his life. Born in Apple Creek and now residing in Holmesville, Sonny has been a volunteer at Save & Serve for more than six years.

“I started about 2011,” Sonny said. “I sold my trucking business and then started volunteering with my wife Sharon.” Sonny learned about the volunteer opportunities available at Save & Serve through his church. “Our church has been involved from the beginning,” Sonny said. “We have known about it all these years and were finally able to help.”

Sonny volunteers at the store about half a day a week and puts some time in at home. When in the shop, Sonny mans the workbench, repairs electrical items, maintains the trucks and does welding projects. He occasionally drives the trucks as needed.

“I like seeing some new things that come in,” Sonny said. “It’s a challenge now and then when we get an item and we don’t know what it is. We work together to figure it out.”

Not all donations come in decent shape.

“Sometimes I can repair items with some extra thought,” Sonny said. “I like the challenge, and I like working with the staff and volunteers.”

Working with and meeting new people is a highlight for Sonny, and he said he volunteers at Save & Serve in an effort to help others. “That’s the main thing,” he said. “Everything goes to Mennonite Central Committee. It helps people far away and at home. People can buy things at a bargain, and that’s a good thing.”

For Sonny, Save & Serve is a mission he can serve at home. “I’ve never had the opportunity to go overseas, but this is one way I can support MCC and those working in other countries,” he said. “My wife has made friendships with customers and really enjoys doing that.” One regular customer is an artist from the Sandusky area. “She did a painting of a lighthouse and gave it to Sharon,” Sonny said, “and got the frame from Save & Serve.”

While there is work to be done at Save & Serve, the volunteers have lots of fun too. “We get our laughs,” Sonny said. “The manager came back one day and said, ‘You guys are having too much fun back here, but you are getting a lot done.’”

Sonny and the other volunteers want a sign for the workbench that says,
“If we can’t figure it out, it ain’t broke.”

Sonny sums up Save & Serve this way: “Resourceful, mission-minded and family,” he said. “It feels like family when you get to know so many of the people. And we’re resourceful. We take clothing and shoes that you can’t sell and find a market for them.” Sonny also likes that Save & Serve recycles cardboard and metal that can’t be sold.

Sonny had a final thought. “Regardless of what talent you have or if you think you don’t have any talent to offer, it can be used. There will be something you can do. We all have the same goal in mind: raising money for MCC.”