The Rev. Sherry Hicks of Love Walk Ministries in Hickory, N.C., has shut down her attempt to raise money by giving away a 2006 Peterbilt.
By giving each person who donated $100 a chance to win the Pete, Hicks hoped to raise enough money to buy a catering truck for her food ministry for over-the-road haulers and the impoverished, she said. Hicks called off the fund-raiser after selling only 159 tickets, the equivalent of $15,900, she said. A 2006 Pete costs well in excess of $100,000.
“After Katrina, people just stopped buying tickets,” Hicks said.
Hicks spent $6,000 publicizing her efforts at truck shows throughout the country, she said. She now is asking donors what they want her to do with the money, she said.
“I’ve contacted half the people,” Hicks said. “We were able to reach them on the phone. Out of the half, only about four so far have requested a refund.”
This summer Susan Jones of San Antonio sent Love Walk Ministries a check for two tickets and, thanks to a two-for-one deal, received four tickets in the mail Aug. 23. “That was the last we heard from them,” said Jones, wife of Ted Jones, an owner-operator leased to Knight Transportation.
Not having heard anything by Thanksgiving, Susan Jones visited the Love Walk Ministries website and learned the contest was called off.
“I’m glad that they’ll return the money, but there is nothing on the website that says that,” said Susan Jones, who said Tuesday, Nov. 29 she had not yet heard from Hicks.
Love Walk Ministries is operated by Living Word Fellowship, which maintains the website at www.lwfword.com. Visitors who clicked “Win Truck” Nov. 29 saw this announcement:
“This project has been canceled! We are in the process of contacting all those who participated in the donations. We are so grateful for your support … We are continuing to do the outreach ministry … And all donations that are given will be used to feed, clothe and minister to the needy. We look forward to doing something else in the future to further help those who need us. ‘The only way for evil to conquer is for good people to do nothing.’ Amazed by his grace, Pastor Sherry.”
Hicks denied that the fund-raiser was a scam. “When someone has scammed me in the past, I couldn’t get in touch with them,” she said. Hicks is in the process of contacting all donors by phone, e-mail or postal mail, she said. “How is that a scam? I’m calling them. I can prove how many tickets I sold and where every dime went.”
“It is crazy for every trucker to pay for every meal they eat on the road,” Hicks said, referring to her catering ministry. “This project isn’t over. It may be delayed, but it’s not denied. God is still going to help me find a way to help truck drivers.”
Call Love Walk Ministries at 828-325-4773, ext. 206, for more information.