Letter: Tragedy brings out best in people
No words can describe the devastation that happened on Saturday here in Gloucester and the neighboring counties. Lives were changed within seconds. The suddenness of it all is what is so shocking. One minute we are living our daily routines and the next we are dealing with death and destruction.
I am writing this not to state the obvious and to lament our situation, but to point out the good that has come out of this terrible storm.
Immediately after the storm, the people of my neighborhood—Coke—started to work checking on the safety of one another and helping to locate missing people. I was out of town on a Boy Scout day trip and was called by a neighbor who told me of the storm. I immediately thought of my father-in-law who was in our house and started calling around to see if I could locate him. Two of my neighbors volunteered to look for him even though their houses had been badly damaged. Eventually, we discovered he was safe and they could return to the tasks of securing their property, but they thought of others first.
On Sunday, everyone went around the neighborhood first to check on everyone and then they started on the cleanup. It was amazing to see the number of people from all parts of the county come to help in whatever way they could. Some brought food, some brought chainsaws, and others trucks. Dominion Power was on the scene working to restore power. Fire and rescue were out helping with the injured and the local and state police were handling traffic. By Sunday afternoon, progress was visible.
On Monday, the shelter at Bellamy United Methodist Church was collecting items for those who lost everything. When I visited Bellamy, the volunteers were everywhere and the tables of clothing and other items were well organized and ready for those who needed them. It was yet another example of the strength of our community.
I would like to thank all those who have given of time and goods. Your efforts are most appreciated. Thank you.