Local woman leads effort to help West Virginia flood victims

A Lewis County woman is leading an effort to collect items to help residents of West Virginia that were affected by flash flooding during storms last week.
Kimberly Bentley, a nurse, said she will be purchasing and donating items to the flood victims and will deliver any donated items from our community directly to those victims.
“I have been thinking and praying for the people of West Virginia that were involved in the damage from the recent storms,” Bentley said.
“My family, friends and I have decided to organize a drive to collect needed items for storm victims,” she said.
“Originally we were going to purchase and deliver some of the needed items ourselves, but thought that others in our local community might want to help as well,” she added.
“We will collect needed items and deliver to the flood victims, and hopefully we can make a difference in the lives of our neighbors as they try to recover,” she said.
Judge Executive Todd Ruckel said a local drop-off area has been established at the 911 Dispatch Center on Court Street in Vanceburg.
“I feel led to help these people,” Bentley said.
Local business owners Cindy and Kenny Applegate have also agreed to allow the use the Outfield Hardware Store in Garrison (behind the Short Stop Gas Station) as a drop-off location as well.
Primary Plus in Tollesboro will also be a drop off location.
Bentley said boxes marked as ‘Donations for West Virginia flood victims’ will be placed at these locations until Monday, July 4.
“I will set up a canopy in front of Family Dollar store in Vanceburg on Friday and Saturday (July 1 and July 2) to collect items,” Bentley added.
Those who would like to donate items and are unable to make it to one of the drop off locations may call Bentley at 606-541-2175 to make arrangements for pick-up.
The death toll in the flooding has reached 23 and hundreds have lost their homes to the flooding on June 23.
More than 7,000 customers remained without electric service on Monday and several are without running water.
Bentley said the needed items include nonperishable food items, bottled water and new or lightly worn clothes.
“This same storm system that did so much damage in West Virginia passed over Lewis County,” said Ruckel. “The damage could have happened here with this storm but it didn’t.”
Ruckel said Lewis County has had flash flooding from storms over the past few years and the kindness and generosity of those from outside the county assisted those victims.
“It’s an opportunity for us to help those who have been hard hit by these storms,” Ruckel said.
A storm system moving through the area on Tuesday resulted in damage in the Garrison area including a barn structure being destroyed and numerous trees toppled by straight line winds.
Customers in the Garrison and Quincy areas were without electricity for several hours as a result of damage from those storms.

Items needed for flood victims:
• nonperishable food items
• bottled water
• new or lightly worn clothing
• women’s and children’s underwear and socks
• diapers
• toiletries
• pet care products/food
• washcloths and towels
• hand sanitizer
• baby wipes
• first aid kits
• garbage bags
• cleaning supplies
• rubber gloves
• laundry detergent
• flashlights
• batteries
• blankets and pillows
• feminine products

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