Picayune pays it forward with Oklahoma relief supplies

Published 12:00 pm Thursday, May 23, 2013

Picayune residents have started a relief effort for Oklahoma tornado victims, including those with relatives in Picayune, by collecting supplies.

The deadly tornado that crawled 17 miles across Oklahoma killed 24 people Monday.

Scott Marinucci spent the first 20 years of his life in Picayune and now lives in Moore, Okla., an area that was devastated by the tornado.

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He and his family are okay, but the town was heavily damaged.

Marinucci’s home miraculously made it through the deadly tornado, withstanding roof damage.

“My neighborhood looked like a total war zone,” Marinucci said.

Friends of Marinucci’s have organized a relief effort of various supplies that will be shipped to Moore on Friday.

“Thanks so much guys,” Marinucci said to his friends in Picayune the day after the tornado tore through his city. “Think of the people that lost loved ones and houses, my family is safe and well.”

“After all the help and donations our city and county received after Katrina from strangers all over the country I thought this would be a great opportunity to give back and pay it forward,” Reagan Stockstill said. “As thanks to all those people that helped us in our time of need.”

“It’s a community effort,” Stockstill said. “People that want to lend a helping hand.”

The drop off point is Picayune Central Fire Station on Cooper Road behind IHOP and they are collecting supplies until Friday night.

Items to donate are non-perishable food items, bottled water, toiletries, diapers, first-aid supplies and gift cards.

“The community is in need of socks and shoes,” Marinucci said.

The crew is requesting new socks and wearable shoes.

Due to the limited space available in trucks and trailers to deliver the supplies, they are asking that no clothing items be donated.

“I’ll be driving a truck and trailer up on Friday,” Stockstill said. “Another may follow if needed.”

Janet Guidry at the fire station has been manning the operation and will be there today to assist with collections. The office will not be open on Friday. To drop off supplies, Friday or after hours, ring the door bell at the main entrance for assistance.

Volunteers may be needed to assist with organizing and loading the supplies.

To volunteer or for questions regarding supplies, contact Reagan Stockstill at reagan62@bellsouth.net.

All supplies donated will be delivered to the ministry Somebody Cares, and supplies will be dispersed wherever they are needed. Somebody Cares has a chapter in Picayune at Resurrection Life Church.

Area churches helping in the relief are: The Somebody Cares Chapter at Resurrection Life Church; First Baptist Church; St. Charles Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus.

Students of South Side Elementary took the time to make cards for the students of Moore, Okla. and they will be delivered with the donated supplies.