Altus man picks up trash to help spruce up neighborhoods

ALTUS, OK (KSWO)- City officials in Altus canceled its contractor for trash pickup on bulk items which has resulted in more trash than usual left in alleyways around town. But one resident has taken it upon himself to remove trash from neighborhoods.

"I got around to the alleys and I started seeing all the actual trash that was piling up so, I just started going and taking the initiative to pick it up myself," Jeramie Maldonado, resident.

In the back alleys of Altus, you may notice Jeramie Maldonado piling trash into the back of his blue pickup truck.

His regular job is as a construction worker, but in his spare time, he works to beautify his community.

For the last week, he's picked up trash every day.

"Some people they look at me and might judge a book by its cover, but when they meet me they see me they see that I have a heart of gold. I like to help people and I'm just out here causing no harm, doing what needs to be done," said Maldonado.

For the last five years, the City of Altus has hired contractors to pick up bulk trash items. City officials have closed the bid on a contractor but have not decided on a start date. Regular garbage pickup happens once a week.

However, Maldonado said without a contractor the garbage is piling up and it's just something he wants to do.

"It's just courtesy really," he said. "Just to see a trashy spot and just want it to look nice. I mean it's my city I love it. You know I don't just want to see it filled with trash."

After pick up, he takes the trash to local dumps or burns it on his land.

He said his hope is that his kind gesture will fuel others to take care of his hometown, which he said is his favorite part on the job.

"If you really take pride in your city you would see a problem and just charge at it," he said. "You wouldn't let it happen. You know not my city."

This isn't the first good deed Maldonado has done for the community. About 15 years ago he and his brother helped build the skate park at Missile park.

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