Unsung Hero: Alan Chapman

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By Ashley Smith
By Josue

FRANKLIN COUNTY --  One man is using exercise to clean up his community and help his church.

 You may see Alan Chapman on the side of the road picking up cans and other litter in Franklin County.
 
Alan has suffered four heart attacks and is unable to work. He spends hours at a time cleaning up the roads, recycling, and exercising all at once.
 
"I told my wife one day I want to start walking for cans," explains Alan. "And I don't care if I pick up any, but it gives me a purpose to get out there and do it."
 
Alan says he's found everything from cans and bottles to iPhones!
 
"I also pick up any number of things: wallets, money, telephones. I've delivered quite a number of those back."
 
When Alan isn't collecting cans, he spends a lot of time at the First Apostolic Church in Zeigler.
 
He is the greeter, the sound man, and has been a large part of their remodeling project the past four years.
 
Alan was able to collect enough cans in just a few months to pay for a down payment on a wheelchair lift at his church.
 
"It was a big blessing," says Youth Pastor Bradley Gray. "Our church is stable financially, but we don't have thousands of dollars to put out on large things."
 
Bradley says there are about ten people who use the lift each time they have service. He says before they got the new lift, some of those members would attend fewer services because of the inconvenience. 
 
As for Alan, he says this keeps him busy, and it gets his doctors off his back.
 
"My doctor kept hounding me to get out and get some exercise so this is what I've done. I enjoy it. It gets me out in the fresh air. I put my little head phones on and walk up and down the street, and people honk and I just wave."
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