Down East Destroyed

By
Crash. Bang. These are the sounds I heard all night long keeping me awake. It all started the day after Hurricane Isabel. My dad and I hopped into his Chevrolet 2500HD left our house in a hurry to meet the guys at our church, First Baptist of Morehead City. We had to get the church trailer a 16X8 foot white disaster recovery trailer ready with all the supplies that we needed for this big clean up job. Even though I was ready, I did not realize how much work we were going to have to put in to this job.

We knew the call was coming, when the phone rang with a loud ring. It was the supervisor/director of all North Carolina Baptist men. He said, “That down east had been flooded.”
Then Mr. Danny said, “In his deep voice he said we will have to start next Saturday team.” That week was crazy getting miscellaneous supplies for the project in the South River. I went to Lowe’s more that week than I had ever been. My Dad said every day when got home from work, “Tanman I have to go to Lowes with the guys and I went every time.”

Saturday came in a flash my dad and I woke up ready to crawl back into the bed but instead we got ready for the big day. Once we were ready we climbed into his big black truck and drove to the church to meet all of our help. We connected the truck to the church trailer and headed to South River. About half way there I asked my dad eagerly, “Where are we going South River or Florida.”

He replied, “Were going to South River why?”

I said, “We have been in the car forever.”

The exact moment we drove in, every house had something missing or destroyed, it was horrible. I tried to imagine my family being in this situation having to drag all of your belongings to the curb.


Dreadfully we went to our first house that we were assigned to. We went in and met the people who lived there talked to them about who we were. We would also pray with the family. We went to the trailer and got a few things that we needed the pressure washer, the generator, and a few other miscellaneous hand tools. A few people began to take all the rest of the family’s belongings to the curb. The rest of the team would start power washing and sweeping gallons of water out of the houses. Then started pressure washing the mud out this family’s home. Stressfully we took the saw and cut the walls out 6 inches above where the water entered this home. This family was so thankful of our help but was sad at the same time when we were tearing their house apart at the same time. We did this same process to so many houses we could do it with our eyes closed because everybody had the same job. My job was the runner. When somebody needed something they would just call my name and I would be there eagerly to help. I knew the church trailer like the back of my hand. We repeated this process to so many houses down east until we had them all mudded out. After the mud out process we spilt our crew in to 6 teams so we rotated going down there to rebuild the place we had just clean up. We replaced every thing we cut out of those homes when we started to rebuild. My group that went down east was Dad, me, Mr. Rob, Mr. Daniel, and Mr. Floyd. All guys who attended our church. While rebuilding I learned how to use fractions because I went in they told me the length of a board I would run out to the saw and tell who was cutting usually Mr. Floyd. I learned a lot of other things but can’t remember everything. We went down there every 6 Saturdays. It took us 13 months to complete the mud out and rebuilding process. When we were done it was such a relief.

They say Baptist love to eat and we always had thanksgiving at church a few days before thanksgiving. This year instead of having it at our church we had it in the South River fire station garage. That ended our clean up and rebuilding process down east. That sure was a job! I learned so much through this process it is not even funny but the one thing I will never forget is that moment we drove in for the first time. This can happen to any one so we were glad to help these people in need.





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MrsHaines said...
Sept. 25, 2008 at 2:07 pm
What a wonderful project to be involved with. Not all people your age would have been so eager to help.
 
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