Moe Deloach always had a plan for what he would do once his professional basketball career came to an end.
It was simple, really.
Return home and help.
“One of my main goals for retirement was helping a lot of people,” Deloach said.
The Northern Nash graduate, who recently retired from a 10-year overseas basketball career that included stops in Italy and Romania, is doing just that. Deloach joined about 25 to 30 volunteers on Thursday at the South Rocky Mount Community Center to distribute food to anyone in need.
Volunteers packed cardboard boxes with bread, fruit, canned goods, vegetables and more and loaded the boxes into cars that lined the street leading to the community center.
The food supply came from a program dubbed as a free mobile market, run by Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, a Raleigh-based organization that saves and distributes over 5 million pounds of food per year that would otherwise be thrown out.
The food comes from markets, grocery stores, farmers and individual food drivers and donations.
So when the opportunity arose to distribute food out of a community center where Deloach frequently spent time while growing up in southern Rocky Mount, he jumped at the chance to help.
“(Recreation Coordinator) Chris Koufopoulos and (Recreation Services Supervisor) Chris Allen did a great job of making sure everything ran smoothly,” Deloach said. “It’s amazing when people come together. We tried to keep the helpers and the groups under the 50 mark to follow protocol.
“We had cars ride through and we packed the food in their cars. We had the boxes ready and just handed them out to the people like a drive-thru. They got water, eggs, bread — all sorts of food.”
Last June at the community center gym, Deloach held his ninth annual free youth basketball camp. Kids received a T-shirt, practiced skills with coaches and players and even got to meet special guest Todd Gurley.
Deloach, who co-owns Moe & D’s Restaurant and Grill in downtown Rocky Mount, plans to continue his basketball camps. He also is in the process of building up Moetivation Foundation, his nonprofit organization aimed at helping underprivileged youth in town.
“People ask me why I came back home, because they think with my resume I could go anywhere else,” Deloach said. “And I tell them that this is my area. I want to help in times like this. And being the face of the community, I want to help, and I’m in a position to volunteer my time. It’s all I want to do.”
The next food drive will be held on April 2, with plans to continue on the first Thursday of each month.
“To all the volunteers that came through, thank you so much,” Deloach said. “I want people to know that this is not just me. It was one of those things where everybody understands the situation we’re all facing.
“We are on the rise right now as a community. It’s one of the best times to be in Rocky Mount, and you’re starting to see a lot of people come together no matter the color — black, white, yellow, purple, pink — it’s great to see.”