Hopkins Co. tornado victims given new furniture at Ballard Convention Center

Newscast recording
Published: May. 23, 2022 at 6:41 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

MADISONVILLE, Ky. (WFIE) - Kentucky residents lined up outside of the Ballard Convention Center, looking to check one more thing off their lists as they rebuild their homes from the December 10 tornadoes.

Residents like Andrea Burden from Dawson Springs and Rachel Eagen from Barnsley were among them.

The two had never met before Monday, but they were the first two in line to secure a piece of furniture.

The two were able to bond over the shared experience.

“Me and my 4-year-old granddaughter was in the house when it came through. It was scary,” says Burden.

“It was my two sons that was in the house. Me and my husband was actually Christmas shopping at the time,” says Eagen.

Four organizations came together for this event: the National Baptist Convention of America, the Red Cross, Mercy and Farmer’s Home Furniture.

The goal was to donate new furniture to families who had lost homes and belongings in the December 10 tornadoes. NBCA Disaster Coordinator Ronald Smith flew all the way in from Texas, because he says just a single piece of furniture matters.

“Unfortunately, we can’t give whole house-fuls, but you can come and get something that you need,” says Smith, “once you make your selection, it’s yours for no cost.”

To ensure that everything was handed out fairly, the event required all participants to have FEMA or Red Cross numbers, and some form of ID.

It’s a sentiment that Burden and Eagen can get behind.

“I’m glad that they’re making sure it’s people that are actually affected instead of people just going in and saying, ‘well I lived in Dawson,’ well okay you may have lived in Dawson, but on the other end of Dawson that didn’t get touched,” says Burden, “so I’m glad they’re checking for FEMA numbers and all that to make sure the right people are getting this stuff.”

Burden and Eagen say you might not get as much relief funding from FEMA as you might think, especially if you’ve got any form of insurance, so events like these where residents can just go and get some relief if they have information proving that they were impacted by the tornado are a welcome change.

Volunteers tell us today’s event drew in crowds from every area impacted by the tornado.

They say they’re just happy to help in any way they can.

Copyright 2022 WFIE. All rights reserved.