Community helps Vass residents rebuild after Matthew

Posted October 18, 2016 6:54 p.m. EDT

— Following Hurricane Matthew, the Vass community has come together to help those who were forced form their homes downstream of the Woodlake Dam.

Thelma Walston, who lives in the Riverbend Community, said she was surprised when authorities came knocking at her door and told her she had to evacuate.

"I don't want to drown. That's what I told him," she said. "So, I went with my clothes on. I didn't take no clothes or nothing with me."

Walston and her husband, Ed Walston, left at a moment's notice and were gone for about a week.

"I shut the generator off and had to leave it where it was sitting," Ed Walston said. "That killed the food. That killed everything."

Shannon Emmons said she was told to leave her home too.

"We finally got the power back. We lost all of our food and everything, so we had to throw everything away," she said.

In an effort to help neighbors affected by Matthew, Pastor Raymond Campbell and Mount Pleasant Christian Church are providing supplies to those in need.

"Everything from the clothing, to the food, to the hygiene items, to the buckets that supply cleaning supplies," he said.

And while the church continues to help neighbors in need, residents who live downstream want the dam fixed.

"If they are going to keep it, I want it repaired," said Larry Cameron. "If not, then I want it drained."

The group that owns the lake and dam say they will fix it.