New Houses Dedicated to Brookport Tornado Victims

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By Evie Allen

BROOKPORT -- A Saturday ceremony took place to dedicate three homes rebuilt since the Brookport tornado in November.

The Massac and Pope County Recovery Committee has been working to take care of the victims of the devastating tornado. Members say they have a lot more work to do, but Saturday's ceremony is a reminder of how far they've all come.

Dozens met in Brookport to celebrate not one, but three newly-built homes. The dedication ceremony was filled with scriptures, prayers, and thanksgiving to God.

"I'm just blessed, and I really appreciate everybody, all the volunteers, and just everybody," said homeowner Clark Blasdel.

Volunteers from churches and different communities all over the country worked together to help in the rebuild.

Blasdel said he had never been through anything as life changing as that shocking November day. 

"I've never been through a tornado or anything like any kind of bad storm. And now I just think, I've never had nothing this good happen to me either," said Blasdel.

The project started as a way to help tornado victims put their lives back together. The families met with case workers to let them know their needs. 

"Anything that was classified as an unmet need, we tried to fill that need," said M.P.C.R.C. board member Joseph Benberry.

The recovery group is currently working on 10 houses and has plans for many more. Benberry says the goal is simple. They're rebuilding homes to restore hope.

"We care about people. We want them to have what they need and whatever it is, we say we're going to try to get it for you. And we search high and low. No is not an answer till we have exhausted all of our options and resources," said Benberry. 

Each of the families were also handed starter kits and a special homemade plaque. Metropolis Mayor Billy McDaniel said he hopes this serves as reminder to the families to help someone else.

"What you have received, you should always pay forward. Don't forget about the people who are still not in their homes," said McDaniel.

The three homeowners look to move into their new homes sometime next week.    

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