RECOGNIZING SHIRLEY COMBS; Congressional Record Vol. 165, No. 134
(Extensions of Remarks - August 09, 2019)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E1046]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []

                       RECOGNIZING SHIRLEY COMBS


                           HON. DOUG COLLINS

                               of georgia

                    in the house of representatives

                         Friday, August 9, 2019

  Mr. COLLINS of Georgia. Madam Speaker, I rise today to recognize Ms. 
Shirley Combs for the lifechanging impact she has made on the homeless 
community in Toccoa, Georgia.
  Nineteen years ago, Ms. Combs opened Shirley's Sole Food Cafe in 
Toccoa. It was opening day, and she had just prepared heaps of homemade 
creamed corn, fried chicken, sweet potato cobbler--every southern food 
you could ever imagine. Lunchtime rolled around, and she opened her 
doors with excitement, but there was just one small problem--there 
wasn't a customer in sight. In an effort to ensure her delicious food 
didn't go to waste, Ms. Shirley walked out outside, found a homeless 
man, and told him to round up everyone he knew to come eat.
  Nearly two decades later, and Ms. Shirley is still nurturing the 
homeless in more ways than one. Each afternoon when her restaurant 
closes to the general public, a line begins to form at the back door; a 
line of people looking for a second chance and a full belly. As one of 
her customers recently said, ``discarded food nourishes the soul of 
  But Ms. Shirley's mission to nourish souls in need doesn't stop 
there. Listed on her menu is the option to donate to Shirley's 
Shelter--a 501c3 that has helped over 300 people get off the streets in 
the last 12 years, which is funded thanks to customer donations and a 
monthly breakfast. Through Shirley's Shelter, Ms. Shirley maintains 
three homes for previously homeless men and women who help at the 
restaurant until they get back on their feet while remaining drug free. 
Ms. Shirley also works to reconnect them to their families, often 
distanced due to addiction.
  Reflecting on her restaurant and shelter, Ms. Shirley recently 
remarked, ``all glory and honor goes to God. We are called to care for 
the least among us.''
  Ms. Shirley is certainly caring for the least among us, and in the 
most beautiful way--by turning her passion of cooking into care and 
compassion for those less fortunate. On behalf of the Ninth District, I 
want to thank her for transforming lives in Toccoa and beyond.