Philadelphia-area Red Cross volunteers to help tornado victims through holidays

"Kentucky is the worst I've ever seen. I have never seen as much destruction as I've seen in Mayfield," said one volunteer.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Volunteers with the American Red Cross continue to arrive in Kentucky to lend a helping hand, and that includes crews from the Philadelphia region.

"Seas of blue tarps, and trees down everywhere and you can see just where it had gone through," said volunteer and National Fleet Operations Administrator Mary Noll of the devastation.

Buildings are destroyed down to their foundations. Noll said everything is just unrecognizable.

"Kentucky is the worst I've ever seen. I have never seen as much destruction as I've seen in Mayfield," said another volunteer and Logistics Facility Officer Larry Daly.

According to the American Red Cross, over 500 volunteers and staff members are on the ground, helping build things back up while also providing comfort to the people in the Midwest.

"They have chosen on their own to leave their friends and family during the holidays, knowing they won't be there for Christmas and for (the) New Year," said American Red Cross Regional CEO for Southeastern PA Region Guy Triano.

Some volunteers, like Noll who just arrived there, are using their own personal losses to drive their efforts to help the people in Kentucky who have lost even more.

SEE ALSO: 2 babies survive Kentucky tornado that carried them away in bathtub

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The bathtub was found in a nearby yard, upside down, with the babies underneath.

"I lost my husband nine months ago and I know there's a lot of people who can't deploy because it's a holiday. I had nothing to hold me back and I know this is what my husband would want me to do -- to go out there and be there for other people," Noll explained.

She said both she and her husband dedicated their retirement to helping others in disaster situations. She knows her husband is watching over her and those suffering in Kentucky.

"The people here really appreciate what we are sacrificing and there's nothing better than to give your time, your love, and your care to people who are very much hurting," Noll said.

More volunteers will be heading out to help starting next year. They are expected to stay through January.

If you are able to help, officials with the American Red Cross said the best and fastest way to do so is online.
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