COLUMBIA, MS (WDAM) - This week marked two weeks since severe weather conditions brought tornadoes to the Pine Belt - just two days before Christmas. Many of our neighbors in Marion and Jones Counties huddled for safety as their lives were forever altered. Homes and businesses were destroyed or severely damaged, lives were lost and dozens were injured. A total of five people died as a direct result of this devastating weather event. We are thankful to the first responders who risked their safety to assist those in need. The firefighters, EMTs, law enforcement, hospital staffs, Red Cross, Salvation Army and many others all working together to help. But it is far from over. It will take many months and, for some, years to pick up the pieces and get back on their feet. That is why tomorrow on both our NBC and ABC stations we are conducting a telethon to raise funds for the long-term recovery of these families and small business owners. We have partnered with the Greater PineBelt Community Foundation who will administer the funds to those in need. Please consider donating. Starting at 5am tomorrow a group of volunteers will answer your calls to help. You can donate by calling 1-844-281-5609 or text "HOPE" to 601777 for a direct link to our phone bank or to donate online.
Thank you for all you do to make the Pine Belt a better place every day.
This is today's Viewpoint.