Hale County High senior rallies peers for Kentucky donation drive
By WVUA 23 News Reporter Aajene Robinson
A Hale County High School senior who was in Kentucky when tornadoes caused horrific damage across the state went back home with ideas on how he could help the people who lost everything. And now the whole school is pitching in with relief efforts.
Devin Tingle was on a recruitment trip at Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky, when the tornadoes swept through.
“We were in our hotel rooms, and I was about to go to sleep when the coaches came up, knocked on our doors and said we needed to go downstairs,” Tingle said. “(The tornado) was coming, it was about to hit. That’s when we heard Mayfield got completely leveled.”
Mayfield is about a 30-minute drive from Murray.
After the incident, Tingle wanted to help because that’s where he may be spending the next four years of his life.
“They’ve done a lot for me, so I just wanted to return the favor and help out some people in need,” Tingle said.
Hale County High School Principal Ronnie Garner said he’s been with these students for about 12 years because he was principal at their elementary school.
Garner said it’s been a blessing to see them grow into outstanding young men and women.
“It really makes me proud to see that they are going on to college just like Devin, having scholarships, and giving back to the community,” Garner said. “It really touches me and makes me feel really good for our parents and our students to do this. No one asked them to, they just said, ‘hey, can we help?’ ”
He’s proud of his students for taking steps to help people in need.
“We’ve got really good students here at Hale County High School, and I love that they have compassion and a will to want to help other people in need,” Garner said.
The donation drive is collecting nonperishable food items, baby supplies, water, blankets, toys and hygiene products.
If you’re interested in donating to the cause, you can drop off items at the school on the front porch next to the Christmas tree at any time.