WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Although many people living in the Triad may have grown up in areas hit hard by Hurricane Matthew, they keep their hometowns close to their hearts. However, hearing of people they know and love rendered helpless due to the storm’s devastating impacts, leave many of them feeling further away from their hometowns than ever.
“It’s heartbreaking, being that I’m here safe, I still have my home, and knowing that some people there don’t have anything,” said Officer Ovid White II, of the Winston-Salem Police Department.
White’s wife, Shanetta, grew up in Kinston. Many of the streets she traveled upon growing up became submerged and many of the people who belong to the communities in which she belonged have been left with nothing.
“Knowing that we’re here and we can’t really be hands-on, it’s kind of tough,” White said.
So, as those residents are starting over, the Whites have decided to start something new of their own.
“We just want to make sure they they’re lifted up and not so much down at this time,” White said.
On Saturday, White sent out an email to all Winston-Salem city employees, asking for anything they can give to help the flood victims; diapers, clothing, food, etc… They have set up boxes in both the Public Safety Center and City Hall where those items can be dropped off.
“We want to make sure that they have at least a little something to take to their new home, or wherever they need to go,” he said.
Although many organizations on the ground in flood areas say they can no longer accept such items, White says he will take whatever you can give and go to Kinston himself.
“If I have to solicit help from my parents, my uncles or whatever, I’ll do it,” he said. “I’ll get it there. It’ll get there.”
White says he will travel to Kinston this weekend, but will continue to accept donations until the first weekend in November and continue to travel there to drop off items.
“I’ve got chills now,” White said, speaking to FOX8 on Monday. “So I’m pretty sure it’s gonna be more joyful doing it and seeing their smiles on their faces.”