BAXTER SPRINGS - The community is preparing to say goodbye to one of its finest. After putting in over two decades of service, the Baxter Springs Ministerial Alliance Thrift Shop and Food Pantry’s Director Berniece Moss will officially step down from her position effective on Nov. 1.

Berniece's upbeat attitude and relentless devotion to the causes she passionately believes in, have made her a staple, not just in Baxter Springs, but all across the region. While she has served as the pantry's director for 12 years, she actually has volunteered with the organization for a total of 20 years.

Across those years, countless hours of work and a lifetime of memories have helped the Food Pantry grow exponentially from a 30-foot stretch of wall in the back of the Thrift Shop, to its own, new building. Meanwhile the Thrift Shop has also grown, helping hundreds of families per month.

Moss said that she came to Baxter Springs due to her husband Bruce’s job in 1997. She started volunteering at the Thrift Shop to get to know people and to serve the community, and the rest is history.

The Moss’ are leaving to be with their family and spend more time with their grandchildren. They will be relocating near Lubbock, Texas, as that is where Bruce is now working at their son’s law firm.

"Baxter Springs is their home and we have lived here longer than we have anywhere else," Berniece said.

She added that this will always be their home and they will always come back to visit. Moss finished the interview with, "Thank you for all the donations, backing and support over the years. I wish the new director nothing but the best as I want the Thrift Shop and Food Pantry to be even better than it has ever been."