May 24, 2013 —
The Morehead community is coming together again to aid those in need.
This time it is to help those affected by the tornado that ripped through Oklahoma earlier this week.
The twister flattened the Oklahoma City area, leaving 24 dead, including nine elementary school students.
According to the National Weather Service, the tornado was 1.3 miles wide as it moved through the city with winds ranging from 200 to 210 miles per hour.
The tornado ranked as an EF5 on the Fujita Scale, making it one of the most powerful tornadoes ever recorded.
The Rowan County UNITE Coalition is taking the lead in collecting items to be sent to the devastated areas.
The organization is working with Samaritan’s Purse, the same organization which assisted with relief work following the West Liberty tornadoes. Those interested in donating items can do so at the Rowan County UNITE office located on West Sun Street in the old middle school building.
Rowan UNITE is asking for flashlights, batteries, personal hygiene items, tarps, bottled water, sleeping bags, pillows, blankets, towels, pet food, garbage bags, non-perishable foods, manual can-openers, plastic utensils, paper plates, Bibles and books, children’s toys and camping supplies. The full list of items can be found on the Rowan County UNITE Coalition Facebook page.
The UNITE office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The office will be closed May 24 and May 27 for Memorial Day.
UNITE Director Dana Quisenberry said she believed it was important for the community to get behind the volunteer efforts, as it makes for a more resilient community.
“They are in crisis,” Quisenberry said. “They need help.”
Bluebank First Church of God also is taking steps to help those affected by the deadly tornado. The church is partnering with the First Church of God in Mt. Sterling which is sending a truckload of items to the Oklahoma City area.
Pastor Jeff Fannin said he believed supporting relief efforts shows the compassion of the Morehead community.
“It’s important,” Fannin said. “It could be our community next. You never know.”
He added that he believes receiving this type of support helps victims deal with the tragedy, knowing others cared and wanted to help.
The regional American Red Cross office in West Liberty is encouraging monetary donations. The Red Cross says cash donations will make it to the victims more quickly and allow them to buy specific items they need.
The area Red Cross can be reached at 606-743-2296.
The Bluegrass Area Red Cross also is accepting donations. Monetary donations can be made by calling 1-800-REDCROSS or online at redcross.org.
Donations also can be made in person by visiting Fayette Mall Friday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Donations are being accepted at all Lexington Kroger and Central Bank locations.
Alli Collis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 784-4116.