Salvation Army Bed & Bread Club Radiothon Raises $1.7 Million

The Salvation Army’s 34th Annual Bed & Bread Club Radiothon Raises More Than $1.7 Million to Help the Hungry and Homeless Across Metro Detroit
Total donations exceed $39.5 million over 34-year history

SOUTHFIELD, MI, February 26, 2021 ~ The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit’s 34th annual Bed & Bread Club Radiothon, presented by Ford Motor Company Fund, raised $1,734,364 to combat hunger and homelessness.

The annual radio fundraiser aired on News/Talk 760 WJR, with its on-air personalities Paul W. Smith, Frank Beckmann, Steve Courtney, Mitch Albom, Ken Brown and Guy Gordon broadcasting from their homes in Michigan to Florida to as far away as Haiti.

This year’s Radiothon marked 11 consecutive years of partnership between The Salvation Army and WJR.  In honor of Beckmann’s retirement, the nonprofit presented the WJR host with a special plaque commemorating his support.

Special guests including The Salvation Army National Commander Commissioner Kenneth Hodder, Salvation Army Metro Detroit and National Advisory Board Member Jim Vella, and Bed & Bread Club founder and Detroit Radio Hall of Famer Dick Purtan lent their voices to help those who are hungry and homeless in Metro Detroit. Michigan natives Tim Allen and Christine Lahti joined business and civic leaders to show their support of The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit.  Large contributions throughout the day included:

  • Mary Culler, Ford Motor Company Fund president, called into the live broadcast to donate $200,000 on behalf of the philanthropic organization.
  • The Jack and Annette Aronson family joined virtually to donate $100,000 through the Artichoke Garlic Foundation.
  • A check for $50,000 was presented by The Salvation Army Metro Detroit Advisory Board, Echelon Detroit, and the Women’s Auxiliary.
  • The Bottle Crew President Joel Jacob called in to generously give $36,000;
  • Edsel B. Ford II joined virtually to donate $35,000 to the cause;
  • Reflecting on 34 annual Radiothons, Pat Moran Chevrolet and The Dick & Gail Purtan Family Foundation, each generously contributed $34,000.
  • Detroit native and comedian Tim Allen challenged the public to meet his $25,000.
  • DTE Energy Vice President of Public Affairs Lynette Dowler called in to give $25,000 from the DTE Foundation.
  • Overnight donations were generously matched through a total of $20,000 in contributions from anonymous donors.
  • Alva Adams Mason called in this year to contribute a generous $15,000 on behalf of Toyota Motor North America.
  • Pat Milliken Ford and Detroit musician, KEM, each virtually contributed $10,000.
  • Jim Vella and his family once again stepped up by donating $10,000.

The Salvation Army is blessed to have News/Talk 760 WJR, Ford Motor Company Fund and all our generous donors who have stepped up to help us serve our community in these difficult times,Lt. Col. John Turner, divisional commander and regional CEO for The Salvation Army Eastern Michigan Division. “All the funds raised through the 34th annual Bed & Bread Club Radiothon will allow us to continue providing food, shelter and hope in His name.

For those who missed the opportunity to donate during the Radiothon, there’s still time to contribute by visiting, by calling 833-SAL-HOPE, or by texting “BREAD” to 24365

The Salvation Army’s Bed & Bread Club Radiothon has raised more than $39.5 million in 34 years.

About The Salvation Army Bed & Bread Program

The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit’s Bed & Bread program serves more than 3,600 meals each day to men, women, and children who would otherwise go without.  That’s more than 1.3 million meals every year.  In addition, the Bed & Bread program provides more than 111,000 nights of shelter annually.

The Bed & Bread program is unique in that it serves many people via mobile soup kitchens. The Bed & Bread trucks are on the streets of Detroit 365 days a year making designated stops throughout the day

Media Contacts:

Tracy Wolf

Sharon Tatom Garcia
The Salvation Army

Salvation Army Bed & Bread Club Radiothon Raises $1.7 Million