“Faith, love, joy, and helping others”

Both Hurricane Matthew in October 2016 and Hurricane Florence in September 2018 flooded Cathy Farmer’s home in Princeville, N.C. (the first African American incorporated town in the U.S.), forcing Cathy, her terminally ill daughter, and two grandchildren out of her home. During Hurricane Matthew, the four were rescued from the flood waters. Since then, Cathy and her family have been mobile, staying with friends and family members. Cathy’s daughter recently passed away.

“I was in mid-prayer, thinking about my deceased daughter and her two babies. I was asking God to help me find a way to get the last item needed for the local government to allow us back into our home. I didn’t even finish my prayer when my phone rang. It was Lutheran Services Carolinas (LSC) calling to help us,” shared Cathy.

Now, thanks to faithful giving by Lutherans and others, Cathy and her grandchildren are finally back in their home. LSC and Lutheran Disaster Response (LDR) were able to complete Cathy’s recovery with the help of several faith-based volunteer groups and local vendors.

“The last thing we needed was a water heater and payment of monthly water bills that had been charged during the years we were out of our home. LSC was able to get the water company to remove those monthly access charges and LSC delivered a new hot water heater from Lowe’s,” said Cathy.

“We are so grateful for Lowe’s and their compassionate staff. They treat us like family and provide recovery items for the disaster survivors at reduced prices. Lowe’s allows us to stretch the donated dollars so we can help even more neighbors-in-need,” said LSC Disaster Recovery teammate, Ilham Thurston.

Upon returning to her home, Cathy couldn’t wait to display her daughter’s Christmas tree that had survived both floods. “My daughter loved Christmas. It may be 100 degrees outside, but I will keep her tree up in our home year-round. It reminds me and my grandbabies about what life is all about—faith, love, joy and helping others.”

Story by Paul Dunn, NC/SC Disaster Director, Lutheran Services Carolinas