Sunday, September 04, 2005


The wife listens to country music. By assocation I get to listen to it as well. On her way home from Church on Saturday with Thing2 she heard an announcement on the radio for an event to load up a semi-trailer with non-perishables for those affected by Katrina. She stopped on the way home and picked up some blankets, shampoo, etc. After she got home we went through our closets looking for clothes that other might need. Filled up a couple of bags and put them in the van.

After Church today we headed to the location. The event was from 10 - 2. When we arrived at 9:45 there was already enough to fill one truck. A second was already on the way. We put our stuff on the stack and I walked around taking pictures. When I got back the wife had started helping sort and pack boxes. I took that as a hint and started too.

We pack backpacks with clothes, boxes with food, stacked bottled water on pallets, whatever was needed. After a couple of hours we were tired. Fresh volunteers had arrived so we took off. Two trucks were full. 2 or 3 more were on the way. Not only had the deli whose parking lot the event was using contributed time and space but so did Menards (pallets, people, fork lift) and Steak and Shake (people) help out but one guy, who's company was doing construction in the area, brought over this forklift that could put pallets into the back of the trucks. Huge timesaver.

One package got to me. It was full of stuffed animals. Each one had a little message.

Puts one's faith back.

There were people bringing a box of clothes, a box of food, whatever they could afford. One person brought a truckload (and trailer) of bottled water. Probably 3 pallets worth. Another went shopping at Sam's Club and came with over $3000.00 worth of merchandise. Amazing people - responding for a request for assistance.

    Update 9/6/2005
    From the stations website -

    "Big John and Ray teamed up with Catom Trucking to fill SIX semi trucks with goods that are now heading south to help victims of Hurricane Katrina. Listener response was so massive that local authorities and nearby merchants stepped in to help direct traffic and keep the loading and unloading of donations running smoothly. THANK YOU from everyone at US99.5 for your continued generosity!"

    Six trailers full? Awesome!


Mrs. G said...

Al, My daughter and I were touched buy your post. Thank you for sharing your pictures. We have not been able to directly help yet. We are going to Falls Creek to help cook next week but your pictures are amazing!

God Bless you all for what you can do.

Ian Essling said...

Hi there,

My name is Ian Essling, and I'm the webmaster for Catom Trucking, the company that you wrote about in one of your posts that took the six trailers of supplies down to New Orleans.

My dad, Dale, was actually the main organizer of the project as he knows Ramblin' Ray from US99 and is the head driver of Catom.

I would like your permission to use the excellent pictures you have of the event on Catom's website to supplement the pictures I am already working on.

I will, of course, credit you for the pictures, and I'll even throw a link to your blog on there.

Please send me an email back @ if we can work something out.

thanks a lot,