Friday, December 12


In the four days that I've been back at work I cannot even begin to estimate how many phone calls I've answered from people wanting to donate things to the victims of the fire. It has been a great comfort to all of the victims and to all of us in the community to know that our neighbors are there for us.

The Fire Marshal says hewon't have any answers for at least another week or two, and that's hard, but there is an apartment filled with donated clothing and a storage unit full of furniture. A company dropped off kitchen and bath supplies today and a woman came by with bags full of toiletries. A lot of these are people who are passing it on. People who's own friends and family were affected by Katrina or the Chesapeake tornado seemed to be the first ones stepping up.

Then there's the chief. You cansay whatever youwant about our men and women in uniform, Lord knows they aren't perfect (neither is the country they serve) but at times like this you gain awhole new appreciation for them. The Chief has a whole new wardrobe and his apartment has been fully outfitted. I mean he has everything from toilet paper to furniture. Every detail of a home that you can think of has been brought by the men and women of his ship. I wish I could give the name of the ship here, but I can't. You know who you are, if you're reading this. While I know that your generosity and loyalty has touched your Cheif, let me just say that it has inspired the entire community.

They didn't stop there. Once the Chief had everything he needed they kept giving, bringing items into the office for the other families. We are at the point now where we areasking people to donate to the Red Cross Disaster Fund or the SalvationArmy in the name of the victims.

We've also filled a box for Toys For Tots with all the overflow toys donated to the children who were victims of the fire. Next month we'll have a blood drive at the apartment community to thank the Red Cross for everything they've done. This tragedy has turned into something with gilt edges. While the loss of two children and their grandmother will never be made right I hope that they can see what has happened here. I hope that they see the love that their familyand friends have been wrapped in. I hope that brings them peace.

Thank you Hampton Roads, Thank you Virginia and North Carolina. We won't forget and we will do our best to pay it forward.


slag said...

I often find myself wishing that it didn't take a tragedy (or a holiday) to get people involved and caring for others. Oh well...if wishes were horses...

WNG said...

Me too Slag, but just when you start to lose faith in people something like this happens that reminds you that if you just ask them to step up most people will.

Dianne said...

I have just caught up on what has been going on in your world

I read about the fire but never heard anything about the communities's response to it - I am so glad that so many stepped up