HANNIBAL, MO (KHQA) — They say home is where the heart is. that's certainly true for Denise Damron.
"I live out on my family farm, I'm able to have a wrap-around supportive system with lots of friends, lots of family on a day-to-day basis," Damron said.
The United Way of the Mark Twain Area Executive Director realized quickly, that wasn't the case for everyone in the community.
"For me, you know, it's one of those things where you take those blessings that you've been given in life and really look at providing opportunities to others with the blessings you've been given," Damron said.
Denise has worked on a variety of projects including Love Thy Neighbor, where she raised funds for homeless individuals during the winter of 2020.
More recently, she helped local foster families take on unexpected expenses.
"I'm able to see a lot of things that others aren't, I'm able to see a lot of needs up close and personal," Damron said. "I've been with a lot of our agencies partners and seen individuals who are sleeping in a tent and it is 10 below zero, no one should do that and for me, that is one of those calls to action."
Her willingness to help others and her kind heart did not go unnoticed by her colleagues.
"She has a servant's heart," said United Way Broad President Kevin Arthaud. "She has a passion for being able to help folks no matter what may be in the way."
Outside of her job, Denise continues to help those in need in the community.
A few years ago she adopted her two oldest children from foster care and serves on the board of Down Country, a nonprofit that raises awareness and acceptance of those with down syndrome.
"It's about finding where your passion is and what you are passionate about and really diving into those situations to ultimately improve the future for others," Damron said.
That's what makes Denise Damron a hometown hero.