Annual pantry raid between JT, Lee officially on - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

Annual pantry raid between JT, Lee officially on

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TYLER (KYTX) - The war is on between Tyler's high schools. Students from Lee and John Tyler are in the final stretch of this year's pantry raid. CBS 19's Field Sutton has more.

They're putting their rivalry toward a good cause. This is the twentieth year the schools have squared off in a fight to make the bigger donation to the East Texas Food Bank, but they've never had to get it all done so quickly. All bets are off when the rivals meet on the football field this Friday night, and that game used to come at the end of the season, in the battle of Lion vs. Raider.

"The hardest part? There's really no hard part at all."

The rules of engagement are simple: fill these trailers with as much food as possible. And with less time to get it done than ever, these students are looking for a tactical advantage. John Tyler rallied the troops at a nearby Brookshire's, asking every shopper for help. "It was easy. It came naturally. We had a lot of fun. We cheered and made up chants."

"This year we're mainly focusing on monetary donations because for every dollar you have eight Thanksgiving meals."

Those dollars get converted to pounds of food. You might say it's the artillery that will decide the winner. "The pantry raid is one of our largest food drives. And it's really important for us, especially in the fall because September is the beginning of our hunger action month."

Every bit of food will definitely get used. The East Texas Food Bank feeds more than 180,000 families. "I just like to help out."

The students say it's a rivalry with more than one reward when it comes time for the cease fire. "We just come together and give it all we have."

Together the schools contribute about 45,000 pounds of food each year. That's enough to make 30,000 individual meals for East Texans.

As for the winner, we'll just have to wait until halftime on Friday night. That's when John Tyler and Robert E. Lee meet at Rose Stadium. Both schools will be accepting non-perishable food donations through Friday morning.

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