PANAMA CITY, FL (WSPA) – As the panhandle of Florida begins the recovery process following Hurricane Michael, hundreds of agencies are on the ground to assist.
With Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Michael hitting the nation within weeks of each other, Upstate couple Dave and LeAnn Goodman barely had a moment to rest before they were back volunteering for the American Red Cross.
It takes a special person to immerse yourself into a disaster zone.
“You really develop a kind of love for our country, for the citizens who live here,” David Goodman said. “This is the worst I’ve ever seen.”
Goodman and his wife, LeAnn, have volunteered for the Red Cross a number of times, but he told us that Hurricane Michael was the first time they’ve left their Greer home to deploy to the same place.
“My wife is a very compassionate person and I enjoy sharing this with her and taking care of people,” Goodman said.
With the magnitude of this destruction, it wasn’t just those who lost everything who needed that compassion.
“There is almost as big of a need among fellow workers in a situation like this because there is no power, no water,” he said.
With nearly 1,200 Red Cross volunteers spread throughout the Panhandle, each job is a little different.
“My wife is working in the supply and I’m working in the field, doing warehouse distribution, bulk operations and working with the schools to make sure they can get everything back to normal for them,” Goodman said.
Each day they are working to try to bring a sense of normalcy back to the people who may have nothing left. But no matter the physical or even emotional strain, the Goodman’s will continue to run into the danger to help anyone who may need it.
“And whenever you have the opportunity to serve, give. Because when you give, you get a lot back,” Goodman said.
The Goodman will head back to the Upstate on Friday, making their deployment 10 days long.