Aiding in Recovery from Hurricane Laura: A Message from an ATS Affiliate

Published Date: October 2, 2020
In the wake of the devastation left behind from Hurricane Laura last month, our students and alumni have been hard at work, helping rebuild and care for those who have suffered. We received this letter from alumnus, John Robert Black, who expresses hope and courage in the midst of widespread disaster.
 
Hurricane Laura Leaves Six Dead, Homes Flattened, Coastal Towns Flooded in Louisiana | The Weather Channel
 
 
Greetings team,
 

I’m not even sure where to begin. The devastation in SW Louisiana is truly unbelievable and hard to fathom. It looks like an absolute war zone.

 
Hurricane Laura is the strongest hurricane to hit Louisiana since 1856. The damage is catastrophic. 1000 transmission towers down, 6,600 broken poles, 338 miles of electrical wire, 3000 transformers, and every power grid in our area destroyed. Two of the main water facilities are destroyed, none are full capacity, and another completely nonfunctional. 128,000 households without running water. Trash and sewage are issues.
 
97% of our schools were hit, some destroyed.
 
Insurance claims will be an issue as residents are discovering normal deductibles don’t apply to hurricanes in our area, and deductibles are 3-5% of the total insured policy (average is about $15,000).
 
Our poorer areas that had fewer homes with brick, as well as trailer parks, are destroyed.
 
One of our plants had an explosion and caused a chemical leak. Our downtown business sector was hammered, there is very little food/gas, and it’s a heat index over 100 degrees. Masks and social distancing are impossible, which causes more concerns.
 
Our area was deemed unlivable. I’m commuting from 4 hours away almost daily.
 
This is a true nightmare.
 
I’m sorry to share such depressing news. We WILL overcome…Jesus is alive and we are more than conquerors!! I can still do my work for Asbury! I’m making calls while I travel and sending emails when I have service. Talking to our students has been a source of encouragement and they continue to be grateful and appreciative of our efforts. I think God brought this team together and I’m gonna fight with all I have to reach out to our students. I believe Asbury is the finest seminary in the country and I want our students to know that!
 
Hold us in prayer! Please don’t give up on me, I’m in it for the long haul for ATS!
 
Grace and peace
John Robert Black
 
Dozens of Louisiana families didn't evacuate Hurricane Laura, official says - ABC News
 
Click here to read more about the devastation that swept over Louisiana. 
Click here to read about how you can help. 

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