BRIGHTSIDE: Retiree cleans up Preston one piece of trash at a time
PRESTON, Md. – If you ever find yourself driving through Preston, you just might spot Suzy Staehlin on the side of the road picking up trash.
Staehlin said, “I started picking up trash when I retired in January of this year.”
Suzy was inspired to start doing this when she noticed how much junk was in the grass.
Staehlin said, “I can’t stand looking at it anymore. I’m retired so why not?”
Suzy usually heads out several times a week cleaning up what other people have left behind.
“I just look for things that don’t belong you know? Blue doesn’t belong, [bright] green doesn’t belong,” she said.
She’s usually able to fill up a whole trash bin in just about an hour, and Suzy’s efforts are inspiring others in the community to follow in her footsteps.
Staehlin said, “I did have some people join me and inspired a couple ladies who were walking their dog and they started picking up trash.”
If they’re not joining her, they’re supporting her.
“One guy stopped and actually gave me a safety vest so I could be safe,” Staehlin said.
Sometimes, Suzy is appalled by the amount of litter that she collects in a short period of time, and she’s often frustrated with the people who see this trash first hand and do nothing to help. That’s why Suzy is encouraging others to do what they can to make a difference.
Staehlin said, “If you do have the wherewithal and you’re physically able, stop and I don’t know spend five minutes and pick up some trash.”
If you’re not physically able to pick up trash, Suzy encourages you to contribute to the effort in some way. Suzy herself bought a bracelet from an organization called 4 Oceans. With every bracelet that is bought, this organization promises to pick up a pound of trash.
The overall goal here is to ensure a better earth for our future generations.
Staehlin said, “I just am so happy when I drive up the road and I don’t see the trash.”