Hundreds answer the call to help in Brookport - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Hundreds answer the call to help in Brookport

BROOKPORT, IL (KFVS) -

It's been three days since the deadly tornado ripped through Brookport destroying homes and leaving many struggling to recover.

But on Wednesday, volunteers were lined up ready to help wherever they could.

"This is where my hearts at and it's the least I could do," said volunteer and Brookport resident Tammy Guess.

Volunteers numbering in the hundreds armed with rakes, shovels, and chainsaws came to the aid of a community suffering from loss and shock.

"You know that first 24 hours I think all of us were in shock," said Guess. "It just wasn't processing."

Tammy was one of the few spared in Sunday's deadly tornado. Now she's one of nearly 400 volunteers working to clean up the rubble. And even though her home still stands, she said the amount of people willing to help is overwhelming.

"Oh there's no words to describe it," she said. "It just completely touches my heart. It's just amazing to me how everybody has come together from all over to help and people bringing food constantly. Everybody helping. It's amazing. Very, very touching."

It was an optimistic, early morning start for volunteers coming from neighboring cities to neighboring states. Some traveled several hours to lend a helping hand. But organizers said it's not really a situation you can simply walk away from.

"It is stressful if you've never been in a disaster area like this," said VOAD Region 11 Director Ed Hoke. "To see the destruction, to see the devastation. It is stressful and i encourage the volunteers to that when they go home to talk about what they saw today. Not just keep it inside. It's traumatic if you've never seen it before."

And that's exactly how Tammy described the scene.

"There's no words to describe the effect it has on you emotionally. I can't even describe it. I guess traumatizing. So me feeling this way and I still have my home to go to, I can't imagine how these people feel that have lost everything."

Despite the traumatic experience, the first day of volunteer work has visibly lifted a downtrodden spirit in this community. The death and destruction still weighing heavily on their hearts and minds is somewhat comforted by this amazing show of support.

Organizers say they literally had to turn people away.

If you want to volunteer, you can apply Thursday, Nov. 21 at the Old Veech's gas station starting at 8:30.

Copyright 2013 KFVS. All rights reserved.

  • Heartland NewsMore>>

  • Teacher, SIU alum shot three times in Indiana school shooting

    Teacher, SIU alum shot three times in Indiana school shooting

    Friday, May 25 2018 10:45 PM EDT2018-05-26 02:45:54 GMT
    A teacher who went to SIU in Carbondale was shot three times charging an active shooter at an Indiana school on Friday, May 25, according to SIU.  (SIU Athletics, Facebook)A teacher who went to SIU in Carbondale was shot three times charging an active shooter at an Indiana school on Friday, May 25, according to SIU.  (SIU Athletics, Facebook)

    A teacher who went to SIU in Carbondale was shot three times charging an active shooter at an Indiana school on Friday, May 25, according to SIU. 

    A teacher who went to SIU in Carbondale was shot three times charging an active shooter at an Indiana school on Friday, May 25, according to SIU. 

  • Southeast Missouri State University 'Gum Tree' damaged

    Friday, May 25 2018 9:28 PM EDT2018-05-26 01:28:46 GMT
    The "gum tree" at Southeast has snapped in two pieces (Source: Southeast Missouri State University)The "gum tree" at Southeast has snapped in two pieces (Source: Southeast Missouri State University)

    The "gum tree" at Southeast has snapped in two pieces.

    The "gum tree" at Southeast has snapped in two pieces.

  • visitors-appreciate-extra-eyes-on-road-safety

    MO visitors appreciate extra eyes on road safety

    MO visitors appreciate extra eyes on road safety

    Friday, May 25 2018 9:23 PM EDT2018-05-26 01:23:32 GMT
    Troopers with the Missouri highway patrol are stepping up enforcement on major hgihways for Memorial Day weekend. They also have eyes on the sky helping them track down reckless driving.Troopers with the Missouri highway patrol are stepping up enforcement on major hgihways for Memorial Day weekend. They also have eyes on the sky helping them track down reckless driving.
    Troopers with the Missouri highway patrol are stepping up enforcement on major hgihways for Memorial Day weekend. They also have eyes on the sky helping them track down reckless driving.Troopers with the Missouri highway patrol are stepping up enforcement on major hgihways for Memorial Day weekend. They also have eyes on the sky helping them track down reckless driving.

    Most of the millions of Americans traveling for Memorial Day weekend are driving to their destination, but those driving through Missouri won't be alone. 

    Most of the millions of Americans traveling for Memorial Day weekend are driving to their destination, but those driving through Missouri won't be alone. 

Powered by Frankly