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'Turkey Time with the O-Line' | Bucs offensive linemen gives back ahead of Thanksgiving

Posted at 8:15 PM, Nov 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-25 20:16:42-05

TAMPA, Fla. -- Nearly 1,000 families across the Tampa Bay area got a chance to grab a Thanksgiving turkey from the Buccaneers.

The Bucs offensive line and Publix hosted families who may not otherwise enjoy a hearty meal on Monday as part of the team's 13th annual Turkey Time with the O-Line. Tampa Bay offensive linemen Alex Cappa, Demar Dotson, Ryan Jensen, Ali Marpet, Donovan Smith, Zack Bailey, Anthony Fabiano, Jerald Hawkins, Michael Liedktke, Brad Seaton, Aaron Stinnie, Earl Watford and Josh Wells were among the scheduled participants.

The team handed out full Thanksgiving meals to families in need, who were selected by the United Way.

ABC Action News reporter Heather Leigh spoke with Marpet, who had been participating in this giveaway for five years.

"For me, Thanksgiving meal has always meant so much so I think just the fact that we're able to provide that for other families is great," Marpet said. "It means a lot during the holidays."

This event has grown larger by the year. Feeding Tampa Bay CEO Thomas Mantz said he is loves seeing the growth from a charity standpoint but also added that it speaks to the need in the community.

"Meals bring people together around a table and nothing better personified that than Thanksgiving," Mantz said.

Publix and the Bucs raised over $36,000 to help feed families all year round.

Reporter Heather Leigh contributed to this story.