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Blanketing the community with a spirit of giving

What’s in the heart of our United bankers? It’s easy to find a giving spirit for our communities that are so important to us. Brenda Matthews, a teller in our Caledonia office, is the essence of that spirit.

For Veterans Day, she made 24 fleece tie blankets with Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine insignias for the active and retired veterans who attend her church. Several members of her family are in the Army, including her son who was deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan.

“I’ve always been a red, white and blue girl, and those were even the colors at my wedding,” Brenda said. “I got a card from an Army veteran who shared that he cried when he got his blanket. They were all surprised and had a lot of gratitude that someone would take the time to do this.”

Each 7-foot-long blanket takes Brenda a half-hour to make, and she’s donated many to the homeless as well.
“That’s why I feel I’m on this Earth is to help other people out,” Brenda said. “It makes me feel good to do things for others.”

She and husband John cook a community meal once a month at their church, and during Christmas Santa will attend to pass out gifts to the kids. Fifty to 75 people usually attend.

Brenda also helped start a bazaar at her church that United Bank supports, where funds raised go to a food pantry and a kids summer camp.

“The bank is here to help,” Brenda said. “We’re always out in the community showing folks we’re there for them.”

Thanks, Brenda, for always demonstrating what the United Bank spirit is all about.