Emotionally scarred, our properties and livelihoods beaten and damaged, we will go forward.
To surrender and give in to all that Hurricane Florence has wrought upon us would not be hard to understand. Some have endured far more than others. The weather service even tells us that the rain differential within Bladen County, per their measuring points, was as much as a foot.
At such historic levels, it seems similar to saying the difference of a hot summer day is 95 degrees to 105 degrees. That’s just plain hot.
And in the case of Florence, this is just one bad situation. We were inundated with torrential rain, more in Elizabethtown — 35.93 inches according to the National Weather Service’s preliminary totals — than any other community in the Carolinas.
Not the kind of thing we wanted to be No. 1 for, but so it is, and we’ll respond.
So many things are pivotal, so very key, to what happens next for all of us. We shall determine our response, both individually and collectively.
As the storm was forecast to come our way, the response of our community leaders and emergency workers was critical in preparedness. They did their best with the information at hand, and we all owe them our gratitude.
That effort hasn’t stopped, nor will it in the months to come. Yea, though it may be years to come. Discussions in the last month among county commissioners, for example, were still tied to Hurricane Matthew.
And come October, that will be two years ago.
None of us will do this alone, nor should we. Our community is loving and caring. We’ve proven that before by reaching out to others, and among ourselves.
Before the storm arrived, that care was being reciprocated by total strangers to our community. They came from far and wide in this great nation, here to help people that were no different than themselves.
They didn’t know us, they didn’t know what was going to happen, but whatever it was they were ready to do what they could. There has been more help sent our way since, and there will be more to come.
Wednesday, President Donald Trump made his way to some of the damaged areas in the Carolinas. Though it is hard for everyone to leave politics aside, even in times of crisis, we appreciate his effort. We also hope his pledges to help will be fulfilled.
As we all know, there’s no stronger tape in America than Beltway Red.
Florence left historical markers. Our response to her adversity will be measured differently.
We’ll see love, we’ll see how much people care, and we’ll see how great we are together.