I'm going to step away from talking about West Virginia University athletics for a moment, and discuss something much more serious. There comes a time when we have to take a step back and look at what is really important, and that is why I'm writing this call to action.
As many of you know by now, our great state was devastated by horrible floods on Thursday. The National Weather Service has called it a 1-in-1,000 year event. The death toll is already in the twenties as of the time of writing, and recovery efforts are really just beginning.
I live in one of the towns that was hit the hardest, White Sulphur Springs. My wife, our two children and I were fortunate enough to escape unharmed and without damage to our property, but there are a lot of people that I know personally who can't say the same thing. Our babysitter and her husband, both wonderful, hard-working people, had their home completely swept away moments after they were able to escape. We believe their home is the one in the video below that has gone viral.
They are now left with absolutely nothing but the clothes they were wearing. There are still people missing whose names I recognize, and faces I can picture in my mind. There are names I know being released of those who didn't make it. These are children, parents, grandparents, neighbors. Loved ones. These are people like the rest of us. West Virginians. Mountaineers.
Of course, the devastation isn't limited to White Sulphur Springs and Greenbrier County. The Charleston area was affected just as bad. Clendenin and Elk View recieved the worst of the flooding in Kanawha County, according to reports. There is chaos all throughout the state, and now is the time for all of us to join together the way only West Virginians can. We are a group of people like none other. We are capable of joining together to help our friends, family, and neighbors through the toughest times. We always do. We are a family. Even those Marshall folks. It is time to help each other.
I will be updating this article over the next couple days with information about how you can donate in whatever way you see fit to help your fellow Mountaineers as it becomes available. Whether you donate money for relief efforts, food for food banks and shelters, your time helping those who were affected or even just taking the time out to pray for those in need, your help goes a long way. More than you can imagine, I guarantee it.
"The sun does not always shine in West Virginia, but the people always do." - President John F. Kennedy
Site Manager. Mountaineer. West Virginian.
Donations can also be made to the Red Cross at this link, by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS, or texting REDCROSS to 90999https://t.co/RsaZO4yuxK— Smoking Musket (@SmokingMusket) June 25, 2016
The floods suck. People don't. Donate a few hours of your time during the next few days or RT this so others know. https://t.co/v3x2b7jOsO— Mike Casazza (@mikecasazza) June 25, 2016
@WVUfootball will be collecting water and goods tomorrow from 11 - 6 to assist the people impacted by the flooding in southern WV.— Dana Holgorsen (@Holgorsendana) June 24, 2016
Here are the locations to donate items for those affected by #wvflooding: pic.twitter.com/XlzfJnLOa6— WVU Mountaineers (@WestVirginiaU) June 24, 2016
Just in..— WV Attorney General (@WestVirginiaAG) June 25, 2016
AG & Auditor offices join forces to fill a truck for flood victims!
Drop-off site from 9a-9p Sat @ California Ave & Kanawha Blvd
Update (June 26th, 11:30PM):
The Greenbrier will be using their "Neighbors Loving Neighbors" foundation to collect money and supplies for those in need of help. West Virginia University Hall of Famer Jerry West and his wife have already given a very generous donation. If you are interested in the campaign, go to www.greenbrier.com/neighbors
President Obama has declared the flooding in WV to be a major disaster, which releases government funds to the Mountain State. If you know anyone who has been affected and lives in Greenbrier, Kanawha or Nicholas County, please give them the following information for assistance.