People in the city of Durant continue to recover from the destruction left after a deadly tornado swept through nearly two weeks ago. As MPB's Mark Rigsby reports, those helping residents recover say more manpower is needed.
A group of men with chain saws works to remove a large oak tree that the tornado knocked over behind a home on Jackson Street in Durant. Bruce Poss is from Samaritan's Purse, a Christian disaster relief organization. The group has 32 volunteers from across the country and Canada doing debris removal and temporary damage repairs. He says more volunteers are needed.
"Our greatest need is not finances or supplies, but people. This whole community needs people. There's more work than there are volunteers. What the volunteers can do right now."
One person died in the storm. Nearly 300 homes were damaged. Louise Sanders' home was one of them.
She's lived in on James Street since 1987.
"It tore the roof off my house, and broke the windows, and limbs fell all on my lot."
"How much help does this town need at the moment?"
"It needs a whole lot."
This rural town of about 2,500 is a work-in-progress. You can see men are on houses doing roof repairs.
Several large piles of tree limbs and stumps sit on the side of many streets. It's evidence of the relief and recovery efforts since the tornado came through here April 30th. Nathaniel Christian is the pastor of Durant Missionary Baptist Church. He says the people whose homes were damaged need building supplies.
"When it's time for the rebuild, when it's time to start remodling, or total rebuild, supplies are going to be the key."
The church remains a central location where residents affected by the storm pick up supplies like bottled water, sweet potatoes, and a hot lunch. Christian says the church has fed hundreds of people since the day after the storm hit.