HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – It’s been almost a week since a tornado tore through a Madison County neighborhood. While many of us are able to go on with our daily lives, folks are still struggling. WHNT NEWS 19 Pays it Forward to one of the groups helping them rebuild their property and lives.
You know that saying, “There are too many cooks in the kitchen.” Well, well, in this case, at Wears Chapel Baptist Church on Ryland Pike, there can never be too many.
“They’re doing all the cooking,” described Todd Panter, volunteer coordinator for the church during the relief efforts. “They’re making cookies, chicken and dumplings and chopping onions.”
These ladies, some of whom are with the Central School PTO, were working on feeding workers that are putting in some long hours and victims recovering from the recent storms. Because to them, it’s not just a disaster, it’s people they know.
“The kids go to school with our kids and go to church with us and live next door to us,” explained Anita Geinert, Central School PTO President. “The way the tornado touched down, it just touched down in the middle of a neighborhood.”
“We live here,” said Panter. “These are our neighbors and that’s the image we want to portray is that after this is over, we’re still here and we still want to be involved in the community.”
If resilience, generosity, and kindness could pay for things, the folks in the Ryland community would be all set. However, in the real word, real money is needed.
“How are you going to come up with a $2,000 or $3,000 deductible to fix your house even if you have insurance?” posed Geinert. “That’s not easy. People say what can we do. To be honest with you, I think you’d be better off to give some cash toward helping people make their deductibles so they can get their house put back together.”
WHNT NEWS 19 answered the call and with a Pay it Forward contribution of $319.
“That is awesome!” said Panter.
“Thank you,” responded Geinert. “We really appreciate it and we’ll Pay it Forward.”
Panter said that often times there are a lot of people around to help in the days right after a disaster. He said they plan to stick it out for weeks to come, or longer if necessary to help people get back on their feet.