Volunteer group helps Orange County residents recover from tornadoes, severe storms

Orange County News

ORANGE COUNTY, N.C. (WNCN) – Beatrice Price, 83, remembers taking shelter in her bathroom at her home on Leslie Drive last Friday when an EF-2 tornado touched down in Orange County. 

“I’d never heard such a noise in all of my life,” Price said. “It sounded like metal being hit.”

The storm damaged her home, car, and left trees all over her yard. 

“I don’t know how anybody out here could take care of all these trees, unless we had some help,” Price said. 

But this week, members with Team Rubicon are helping those like Price recover from the band of severe storms.

The group is a non-profit filled with volunteers from different backgrounds, including retired military and first responders. Members come from all across the country, helping around the world, all for one purpose. 

“They don’t know where to start,” Chapel Hill resident and volunteer Carl Wilke said. “You look at the devastation, if it was your house, and you’re just overwhelmed. So, we’re able to say, don’t worry about that.”

“I grew up on a tree farm in Oregon, so it makes me happy working in the outside,” volunteer Andra Willis said. “I’ve lost a car to a hurricane. I had trees fall on my house. When I had trees fall on my house, people from my church showed up and helped us. It’s one of those things where you pay it forward, and give back where you can.”

Since forming in 2010, the group has responded to people recovering from natural disasters all around the country. 

“Because so many people have been to war in the last 20 years, it gives veterans a purpose and a mission,” Mike D’Haene with Team Rubicon said. “We can use their skills that they learned in the military to help us help people.”

Meanwhile, those like Price are trying to move forward. 

“Being retired, a senior citizen on a limited income, you just do the best you can,” Price said. 

D’Haene told CBS 17 that members with Team Rubicon plan on being in the neighborhood to help out until next Tuesday. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories