Local Red Cross Volunteers Return From Florida

By: Rebecca Burlette
By: Rebecca Burlette

Darrell Carlson left for Florida with his twin brother Dennis on August 16th. The two Red Cross volunteers are now back home after helping thousands of Hurricane Charley victims.

Victims were without power, lost all of their food and had no where to shop.

"Without the Red Cross victims would have no place to get fed," says Carlson.

Darrell, who worked 12 to 15 hour days in Florida with a heat index of 115, is used to working at disaster sites, but he says Hurricane Charley affected more people and Florida residents could soon be hit even harder.

"85,000 homes were damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Charley and it will be months or even a year before they get things totaled. When Hurricane Francis comes it could be 80 miles wide, bigger, more forceful, and affect more people," says Carlson.

Hurricane Francis is expected to hit south Florida in less than 24 hours with winds up to 120 miles per hour. Residents there have been busy boarding up their homes and running for cover, but Darrell says he'll head back if needed.

The American Red Cross is the first to come and the last to leave, but helping victims is becoming difficult.

"The National Disaster Relief Fund is critically low right now. Were estimating over $50 million for Hurricane Charley. With Francis on the way were estimating a lot more funds," says Kathy Dyrdahl of the American Red Cross.

If you’d like to help call 1-800-HELP-NOW or 963-8471 for the Red Cross' local chapter. You can also visit their website at www.redcross.org.


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