HHS Football Team Cleans Lynchburg Tire Dump

The terrain off Top Ridge Rd. on outskirts of Lynchburg was steep.

Lynchburg, VA - Someone dumped 249 tires off of a dirt road on the outskirts of Lynchburg. Members of the non-profit Keep Lynchburg Beautiful found the dumpsite a year ago. And now, during Keep America Beautiful week, they decided to do something about it.

Illegal dumping is a crime, but it{}is often done at night and in dark, remote places where there are no witnesses. To make matters worse, once the damage is done it's tough to clean up. But, Keep Lynchburg Beautiful had a creative idea for the heavy lifting.

When you've got heavy lifting to do, there are 35 young men ready to give you a hand.

"Our football team's not just about winning football games. It's about building better citizens also," said{}Coach Brad{}Bradley, Heritage High School head coach.

The Heritage High School football team set aside the weights for a couple hours to do a workout of a different kind.

"Our workout's pretty similar," said Jonathan Meadows, football player.

"I've done some type of community service stuff, but nothing like this," said Andrew Griffin.

The football team spent its afternoon picking hundreds of tires out of a road-side ditch. The terrain was steep, but the crew stayed focused on the goal: keeping Lynchburg beautiful.

"It really pains me to see what people are doing to this community, this great community, this beautiful community," said Frankie Hickson.

In the end, it was all worth it. Several hundred tires taken from the ditch. This is good news for the environment: the water sitting in the tires often leads to mosquitos. For organizer Nels Erickson, this clean-up is also personal.

"I was taught by my father and my grandfather that we only have one planet, and we should try to leave it a little cleaner than it was when you got there," said Nels Erickson,{}chair, Citizens for a Clean Lynchburg.

Now, another generation knows the importance of community service and keeping Lynchburg clean.

"I want to be proud of where I come from and have it looking nice," said{}Griffin.

"I throw all my trash in the garbage or recycling bin, and after this, I'll keep it up," said Frankie Hickson.

If you want to get your hands dirty and clean up your city, you've got a chance Saturday. It's called the March on Litter event. It kicks off Saturday morning at the Armory in downtown Lynchburg at 9 a.m.