East Texans rally to help tornado-ravaged Moore, OK

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A Jacksonville resident and a group of volunteers worked through the night Monday and all day Tuesday to organize a local donation site so East Texans would have a place to show their support and help those affected in Moore, Oklahoma.

Billy Bateman was watching the devastation unfold on television with his family and decided he had to do something.

"I got to thinking that there's something I've got to be able to do," Bateman said. "I've got to help some way, anyway I can."

East Texans are volunteering their time and helping gather supplies so they can fill up a truck just like this so they can drive to Moore, Oklahoma and help the recovery efforts.

"What we're doing is setting trailers up here," Bateman said. "Taking food, water, clothing, diapers anything we can get to take to the people of Moore."

Bateman, the Lone Star Military Farmers, and local volunteers set up shop at the Jacksonville Walmart and will be all-hands-on-deck, 24-7 gathering supplies.

"We're trying to fill 3 trailers," Bateman said. "One every 24-hours to get to Moore and the people up there"

Bateman says their contacts in Moore say they are in desperate need of water.

"They said their number one priority is water," Bateman said. "The power plants are shut down. The water plants are shut down. There's no electricity. We need diapers. You can imagine if you had a kid down there. They need diapers. They need pacifiers. They need bottles."

Even though there is more than 300 miles between East Texas and Moore, Oklahoma, Bateman says it's important that East Texans step up and help in any way they can.

"Whether it's Oklahoma or Mississippi or wherever, we've got to come together," Bateman said. "You got to try and get people involved. The more you have involved, the more we can help them to make their life more comfortable."

Of course, those in Jacksonville aren't the only ones pooling their resources to help out Oklahoma. Many people with family in the affected area and communities across East Texas are collecting supplies and organizing trips to Moore.

Here's a list of places/people across East Texas gathering supplies:

  • FTR Equipment, 3853 South U.S. Highway 69, Lufkin (936-632-3394)

  • Autumn McDaniel, Lufkin Convention & Visitors Bureau, breanna723@yahoo.com

  • Billy Bateman, Jacksonville Walmart, (903-284-1710)

  • Hope Project, 627 North Street in Tenaha

  • Center Chiropractor on the square in Center

  • Whistle Stop Cafe in Tenaha

  • Shelby County Today, 229 San Augustine Street in Center

  • David Shields Automotive, 302 Cora Street in Center

  • Any of the Outreach Ministries locations in Center

  • City Blends, 919 Tenaha St. in Center

  • Zack's Tint Shop, 1419 Highway 87 in Center

  • Amaze Grace Floral, 1105 Nacogdoches Street in Center

  • Elite 10U Girls Softball Tournament Team, Alexis Mason, (936-208-6269), alexismason1982@gmail.com, drop off: 445 McKindree Rd., Lufkin, Tx

  • Trudy Patrick CPA, 520 S. First Street, Lufkin

  • First Baptist Church Lufkin is accepting monatary donations, 106 E. Bremond Ave.
    Lufkin, TX 75901, (936) 634-3386

  • The Texas District of the United Pentecostal Church will be collecting 5 gallon buckets filled with: Toothpaste, Bar soap, Deodorant, Lotion, Toilet paper, Diapers, Wet wipes, Non-perishable foods , Towels & washcloths, Combs / brushes, Crackers, Infant formula, Flashlights w/batteries, camping cookware, Sunscreen, Underwear and socks, tennis shoes, Gloves – work and latex. The donation drop sites are as follows: Eastview UPC at 1407 N Medford in Lufkin Thursday from 9am to 9pm. Filled buckets may be delivered directly to the District Campgrounds, 3900 College Dr. Filled buckets will be received at the concession stand near the cafeteria Thursday 9am-9pm and Friday 9am-12pm. For more information contact David Hunt at (936)63-3525.

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