Rebuilding After Hurricane Irene

Rebuilding After Hurricane Irene

AYDEN - Barbara Whitehead, Director of Give2thetroops in Ayden, lost her home during the storm. Now almost a year later, a group of volunteers are helping her build a new home.

"[During Irene], the roof peeled back and peeled off the front of the house and water poured in," Whitehead said.

She said she used buckets to hold the water.

"We were all drenched. We did not know if the house would stand and the ceiling started to collapse. We had the grandchildren under the kitchen table with a shower curtain thrown over the table," she said.

Now, almost 11 months later her old home has been replaced with a new one.  Mostly in part to a team of volunteers with the Grifton Mission Ministries.

Billy Tarlton is one of those people.

"We believe we should help others you know in time of need. That's what we do. No one gets paid. It's all volunteers," Tarlton said.

Barbara said she had a hard time accepting all the help because she prefers giving rather than receiving.

"I've done disaster relief for 30 some odd years. I didn't know the feeling of receiving and just how much that means when you're sitting on the other side of the table," Whitehead said.

One of the things this new house has an added feature; weather brackets that will be placed under each of the trusses. The brackets help keep the house together during high winds.

For now the group will keep on sawing, hammering and stacking until the home is complete.

"It's an extreme blessing to be able to get them back in a home they can use," Tarlton said.

Whitehead said she hopes to be moved into the new home by the anniversary of Hurricane Irene on August 27.

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