FOREST ACRES, S.C. — The first weekend of October is the 7-year anniversary of the 2015 flood here in the Midlands, and the City of Forest Acres is helping another community that has been devastated by a similar crisis.
"It's just feels right and feels wonderful," said Forest Acres Police Chief Don Robinson.
On Tuesday morning, Robinson, several officers and city leaders closed up and strapped down months' worth of donations and a patrol car and drove them off to Letcher County in Kentucky.
Letcher County is in the eastern half of the Kentucky, where communities are picking up the pieces after a late July flood.
"I had a resident contact me about the floods in Eastern Kentucky and wanted to know if we had a surplus of cars, police cars to donate to the people in Eastern Kentucky," said Forest Acres Council Member David Black.
Black started the initiative aimed at just filling the patrol car with donations, but it grew into much more, thanks to the community rallying behind the effort.
"Our initial expectations were to just fill the car, but we far surpassed that," Robinson said. "We have a plentiful amount of donations, and we're almost able to fill this complete truck."
An abundance of those donations came from Tracy Sutherland and her students at Timmerman School in Forest Acres, who donated several car loads of items.
"When I heard Chief Robinson needed help with the Letcher County flood victims, it was that day I sent an email out to our parents, and they answered that call quickly," Sutherland said.
"Me and my mom went shopping the night before and got a big bin of baby clothes and baby toys," one student said.
Now all the donations have finally been handed over to the Letcher County Sheriff's Office as Letcher and Forest Acres met halfway in North Carolina.
"It's amazing someone from so far away is stepping up to help our little organization and so we can serve our citizens," Letcher County Sheriff Mickey Stines said.
Stines said the department plans to store the donations in their office as he says it's a long road to recovery, but one they will come back from.
"We will build back stronger with the help of the good Lord, and this isn't gonna keep us down, I can tell you that."