Feleshia Ballou-Thornton

Recording artist Feleshia Ballou-Thornton (center) gathers with Cavell Phillips with 106.5 The Beat, Donald Gee from The Gee Law Firm, Ricky Johnson from Ricky Johnson & Friends Foundation, family and other volunteers while they take a quick break from passing out hundreds of bags filled with vitamins, water, masks, snacks and other items.

When recording artist Feleshia Ballou-Thornton came back to her hometown Thursday to provide masks, vitamins, water, snacks and other items to the Sinai community at the Quick Shop on Sinai Road, she had no idea that she would have the response she did.

By lunchtime, hundreds of bags of items had been given out to the community, and police had to be called to the area to help direct traffic.

At the end of the day, Ballou-Thorton said they stopped counting after 675 bags.

“God started giving me what I’ve been praying for so now I have the tools to give back,” said Ballou-Thorton.

But, she didn’t do it alone.

She admits she couldn’t have done it without the help of The Gee Law Firm and Ricky Johnson & Friends Foundation.

The foundation is from Richmond, but Johnson said Thursday just because South Boston isn’t part of Richmond, doesn’t mean he couldn’t help her make the event happen.

He’s used to helping a thousand people a week with water, vitamins and other supplies.

“We have a 24ft U-Haul truck, and we take it to another town each week… when Feleshia said she wanted to come to her hometown, I said, ‘you have the connection, we’re on our way.’”

For over 15 years, Johnson’s main focus has been educating and motivating families while encouraging children to give back to the communities in which they live.

And that’s exactly what Ballou-Thorton wanted to do.

“I had a vision for so long, and I knew when I got on my feet, I wanted to do everything in my power to give back and as my success has grown, and I’ve been speaking positivity in my music, a lot more people are willing to sponsor me. It’s been a blessing,” she concluded.

Ashley Hodge is the editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact her at ahodge@gazettevirginian.com

Ashley Hodge is the editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact her at ahodge@gazettevirginian.com