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Associated Press

'Folks Doing What They Can': KY Church Runs Out of Boxes After Receiving Abundance of Donations for Tornado Victims

12-18-2021
(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Residents in Mayfield, Kentucky are still struggling with the aftermath of devastating tornadoes that tore through the area on December 10. 

Dozens of churches and organizations have stepped up to collect much-needed items for families who lost all of their belongings during the storms. In fact, one church received so many donations that it ran out of boxes on Tuesday, WLKY News reports.

Lone Oak First Baptist Church in Paducah, which is located about 25 minutes from Mayfield, transformed its sanctuary into a collection site and shelter.

Locals have been lining up to drop off food, hygiene products, and cleaning supplies. Gelia Chappell combed through her home for items, then asked her neighbors to do the same. 

She recently brought a truckload of supplies to the church.

"If people are in need, you answer that need. It's part of God's plan. People helping people. It's what this church does," Chappell said.

The hallways and rooms of Lone Oak were stockpiled with donations, ready to be distributed to those in need. 

Executive Pastor, Hank Garner told WLKY, "We don't want anything to stay here. We want it all to get right to the field where it needs to go."

And McCracken County High School senior, Preston Jenkins showed up ready to sort, box, and deliver the critical items to his community.

"I walked in this room and it's full to the top, and I'm just really excited about that," he said.

Lee Willingham, an administrator with Lone Oak, expressed her gratitude for the outpouring of support from people, everywhere.

"It is amazing to see folks from all over the country that are rallying to assist," Willingham noted. "The story is about people who are in need, and it's just amazing to see folks in communities across the country trying to do what they can to assist those in need. It's challenging to coordinate on our end, but the folks that are here receiving are amazed by the outpouring that's coming."

"It just warms the heart to see folks doing what they can to lend aid," she concluded.

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