Bea Gaddy Food Drive at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum
6:00pm - 8:30 p.m. Bea Gaddy Family Centers invites you to join Dannell Ellerbee (#59) of the Baltimore Ravens for a food drive at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum supporting Bea Gaddy’s Annual Thanksgiving Dinner. Drop off non-perishable food or monetary donations, meet and take photos with Baltimore Ravens #59, Dannell Ellerbe, and tour the museum’s special exhibition, Growing Up AFRO.
“Let us share with those that are not as fortunate as we, care for the young children and help our fellow humans to stand tall with pride and dignity!”
As a young mother “Saint Bea” spent several years homeless and hungry. With the help of a mentor, she found work, earned a college degree, and began a career as a social worker. In 1981she hosted a dinner with about 40 friends and neighbors. Over the years the feast grew to match the size of her generosity, as she persuaded corporations and local grocers to supply food while she served at a local middle school.
Ms. Gaddy also started a furniture bank and a program that refurbished abandoned row homes for families in need. She became an ordained minister in order to perform marriages and bury the poor at no cost to the families. She was also involved in running summer youth programs and teaching voter education.
Over the course of her life, Ms. Gaddy earned numerous honors, which include Unsung Hero Award, 1972; Afro American Woman of the Year, 1984; Baltimore's Best Award, 1984; National Council of Negro Women Humanitarian Award, 1988; Mayor's Citation, 1988; and Baltimore City Council Award, 1987 and 1989. In addition, she was a member of many organizations, which include Martin Luther Church; Women's Auxiliary Butchers Hill Association Member; and assistant chairperson in the Johns Hopkins Day Program.
Due to her selfless dedication she became fondly known as “Saint Bea” to the community. In 2001she died from complications with breast cancer at 68. Her Thanksgiving dinners were only the most celebrated examples of a lifetime of giving and compassion. While she has gone her legacy is carried by her daughters and Friends.
Admission: Non-perishable food/monetary donation