By John Murray

   As a teenager Neil O’Leary worked at the Cumberland Farms in Woodbury selling milk, eggs and bread, but when the groceries started piling up at the ShopRite checkout line he was maning for charity, he was in uncharted territory. “Oh man,” he said, “these are coming down fast.”

  He knew to keep the eggs separate, and utilized his charm and political savvy to plow through the rest. It also didn’t hurt that O’Leary seemed to know half the customers in the store, several from recent wakes. O’Leary attends a lot of wakes, and jokes that he’s a “professional mourner”.

  Neil O’Leary no longer sells milk and bread at Cumberland Farms, his day job now involves managing 3000 municipal employees as mayor of Waterbury. O’Leary was at ShopRite on Wolcott St. in Waterbury this morning bagging groceries and accepting monetary donations that will buy food for community food banks and fight hunger. The event was sponsored by Partners In Caring, a year-round, community-based, hunger-fighting initiative, which has donated about $29 million to 1,700 agencies that help fight hunger. September is National Hunger Action Month.