It doesn't seem like two months, but that's how long it's been since Hurricane Katrina displaced thousands. For storm evacuees now living in Nacogdoches, there are still people looking after their welfare, like United Way volunteers who were unloading new furniture they're about to give away.
Board member Patrick Lanmon took a peek at some of the furniture. "There are all kinds of pieces of furniture, house furniture to office furniture." A Virginia furniture company donated two 18-wheeler loads of brand new furniture to United Way's Gift In Kind Program.
Lanmon said, "I think it's great for us to be able to help people do this. Part of it is going to our agencies here in Nacogdoches that we support, but also going to some of the evacuees of Katrina, and it's great to be able to help them get back on their feet for those who have been displaced by everything."
Katrina evacuee Marilyn Spitzfadden will pick up her new furniture Thursday. She's been living in a hotel since Katrina, but will soon move into a Nacogdoches town home. "You don't realize how [important] furniture is until you don't have it. It's a horrible thing."
Life will become easier with what United Way is providing. Director Deidra Richardson said, "There's still some things we don't have. We don't have mattresses, box springs, sofas, and things like that, but everything else we have plenty of." All the furniture is stored in the BMS Framesaver warehouse. NIBCO is providing workers and a forklift to unload and load the furniture. Richardson said that help was essential for the furniture distribution. "I can't thank them enough."
Also thankful is Spitzfadden."We've lost so much, but we've gained so much with the people here."