Floods Ravage Eastern Kentucky

July 22, 2010


Flash flooding hit areas of Pike County over the weekend, killing two and leaving much physical damage to the area. Ten inches of rain fell in a very short time on July 17, overwhelming many of the creeks in the area.
Members of the United Methodist churches in the area have been busy lending a hand to those in need. While no United Methodist Church buildings were affected, homes of some members of the various congregations were damaged or destroyed. The United Methodist churches have been helping members of their congregations as well as reaching out to others in need.
 Members of Hardy UMC have been cooking approximately 100 lunches and dinners daily for distribution to any persons in need. Alice Tackett - wife of Hardy UMC pastor Geoffrey Tackett - has been visiting some of the hardest hit areas, praying with people and being there to listen when they need someone to listen. One area that was very hard hit was the Burnett Road Trailer Park located in the Raccoon area. Alice Tackett and other ladies from the church went to the trailer park where all 34 trailers were destroyed by flooding, and then fires broke out due to broken gas lines. Residents are still in the area, sleeping in their cars, to protect what few belongings they were able to salvage.
The Pikeville UMC served as a shelter for those in need and is now responding in a variety of ways. The youth of the church have been delivering daily meals to persons on Raccoon Creek and volunteers will soon begin calling those affected to ask about clean up needs. 
Another hard hit area is the Harless Area, where district staff was able to deliver cleaning supplies and pray with residents of that area. Between the two areas, Raccoon and Harless, over 200 homes were destroyed and their families displaced
UMCOR is delivering 800 flood buckets to the area on Thursday, July 22, but further help is still very much needed in Pike County. Among the items needed are: brooms, mops, shovels, bleach and other cleaning supplies. To donate supplies, contact the Prestonsburg District Office at: 606-889-0126. 
The area will soon be ready to receive work teams. The primary work in the near future will be clearing mud and debris from homes.   Teams will need to bring many of their own supplies and pay some expenses for housing and food.  We are currently collecting the names of persons/churches who will be interested in helping in the coming weeks – please call the Kentucky Conference Connectional Ministries Office 1-800-530-7236. You will be asked to supply a contact name, phone & email; approximate number of persons on your team and dates you are available.