Following deadly storm, community comes together to help those in need

Following deadly storm, community comes together to help those in need

CHEROKEE COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Residents in Cherokee County are coming together to help those in need.

“It just started getting dark, and the phone started ringing saying take shelter, and then out of nowhere this tornado came,” Jamie Pope said.

Jamie Pope compares his home to a battlefield.

“With all of the tragedy around us, all the homes that were lost, all of the trees that were down, your life is the most important thing,” Pope said.

Pope was humbled as he asked for help from the American Red Cross for simple things he never imagined he would ask a stranger for.

“The whole time this tornado was going on, the Lord had his hands around us, so I’m grateful for that,” Pope said.

Alto residents sat quietly at the River Churches tables, eating food donated by local restaurants, and filling out paperwork for the American Red Cross.

Destiny and her family went to pick up her grandmother in Rusk after the first tornado hit, and when they came back, their entire home was missing.

“It was just so overwhelming,” Destiny said.

“I think the emotional trauma has been extensive,” American Red Cross Executive Director Tammy Prater said.

Prater said they have collected the basic necessities for those in need - canned goods, diapers, blankets, toilet paper - but are always looking for more donations.

The American Red Cross says if you are wanting to donate or volunteer, they should head to the command center at the Alto Community Fellowship Church, located in the 500 block of Marcus Street.

To help the victims of these storms, click here to donate to either the American Red Cross or the East Texas Food Bank. Both agencies are working daily in these storm-impacted areas of East Texas.

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