By , May 16, 2003

In an effort to bring all the necessary resources to bear for the Jackson/Madison County, Tennessee tornado victims of May 4th, Operation Compassion has solidified partnerships across the United States. When the tornado first struck, Pastor Richard Felts of Parkway Church of God became the field coordinator for Operation Compassion. His first responsibility was to secure warehousing in the area to receive semi trucks. Tim Smith, owner of Hub Express Warehouse Distribution, graciously opened his local warehouse and made his trucks available for distribution in the area.

Several charities responded to the call for help in the Jackson, TN area. Feed the Children and Larry Jones responded immediately with a semi truck loaded with food and disaster relief supplies on Monday, the day after the storm. Operation Compassion had a semi truck delivered immediately as well. Throughout the entire week, Operation Blessing, the Salvation Army, 7th Day Adventist and other charities have delivered food and other disaster relief supplies.

Churches from across the southeast have also responded to the need. Pastor Ed Davenport and Buford Church of God delivered frozen chicken, sausage and staple foods to those families affected by the storm. God’s Pit Crew from Riveroaks Church of God in Danville, VA has brought in two different work crews that have been removing debris and cutting trees for families who have no one to help them, especially the elderly. Pastor Rick Lambert and Covenant Ministries Church of God sent a truck loaded with bottled water. Volunteers from their church also went into the disaster area to help remove debris.

While the response to this disaster in Jackson and Madison County Tennessee have been overwhelming to date, all of the financial resources available to Operation Compassion are now depleted. Yet, the need is still great! City and county officials have estimated that it could take up to four years for everything in the area to get back to normal. Without a doubt, this was the worse tornado disaster in the history of the state of Tennessee.

David Lorency, International Field Director for Operation Compassion, said, “In the face of this catastrophic event, Operation Compassion has pledged continued support to the area citizens affected by the tornado. Throughout the 3 phase process of immediate relief, debris clean-up and repair, remodeling and rebuilding, Operation Compassion will be there.”

In order to accomplish this feat for the Jackson/Madison County area residents, financial and product resources will need to be continually donated. David Lorency stated, “It is not enough to deliver a few dollars and a couple of trucks loaded with supplies to these families that have lost everything. There must be an ongoing effort, which could mean several months to a year or more.”

“It takes years to build lives and only a few seconds to destroy it. No one can rebuild a life in a few short days. It will take time, money and sacrifice. Operation Compassion will do its best to continue their presence in Jackson and Madison County Tennessee,” Lorency continued.
Anyone interested in financially supporting Operation Compassion can mail donations to:

Operation Compassion
Dr. John D. Nichols, President
David Lorency, International Director
Tim Burdashaw, International Operations Coordinator

114 Stuart Road, NE Suite 370
Cleveland, TN 37312
423.728.3932 Office
423.728.3958 Fax

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