I have just returned from the New Jersey coast, the land and waters of my early years. I was relieved to find my many family members well in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, but concerned that the welfare of the area’s communities were far from well, as observed in my home county of Monmouth.
These communities and others in the New York-New Jersey area were devastated by a historic storm surge, one echoing that 1989 Hurricane Hugo surge experienced in northern Charleston County, particularly in my community of Awendaw and nearby McClellanville.
It is only in the previous year that I learned of the outreach by the citizens of Toms Rivers, N.J., who brought relief through a huge outpouring of the best of humanity to the besieged coastal village of McClellanville.
Thanks to The Post and Courier editorial on Nov. 10 “Uplifting Hugo lesson endures,” this great story was brought to light for all the Lowcountry. On my second day in New Jersey, my father showed me an article in the Asbury Park Press, noting the interest expressed by McClellanville Mayor Rutledge Leland in returning the favor to Toms River. He indicated it might be “a drop in the bucket.”
I think not.
The editorial reported about Charleston Cares, working to provide relief to Sandy’s victims, and I have heard of other efforts. I was heartened to learn that the wheels were turning, and McClellanville was leading the way in bringing help to Toms River.
My hope is that the Charleston community will not succumb to disaster fatigue, and get on board in adding many drops to the bucket.