We are happy to keep bringing you Hugs Across America news, highlight activities of our volunteers and create a fun place for our visitors, supporters and friends of our mission.
Flash floods from constant and torrential rains soaked the Midwest flooding homes, stranding motorist and closing major transportation routes. Hugs chapters, both old and new, set out to help the American Red Cross as they created shelter after shelter around the Findlay, Ohio area.
Cincinnati's Church of the Nazarene Chapter joined a new chapter entitled "Bear Necessities" of Columbus and the Stonybrook United Methodist Church of Gahanna, Ohio, whose teddy program is joining our effort to provide hundreds of teddy bears to those children whose families are stranded and whose home are lost.
A special thanks to all for your quick response.
Families are frustrated but continue to hope that six trapped miners are alive. Work is temporarily stopped after another cave in at the Crandall Canyon Mine killed three rescurer workers and injured six more.
The Mountain Valley American Red Cross nearby Huntington, Utah has given teddies to the families and now needs 35 more. "We need all the hugs we can get", acknowledges Katrina Pope of the Red Cross. "We are running out of time, families are beginning to feel that they have given up."
The service was being held at the First Congregational Church in southwestern Missouri with up to 50 worshippers, including children and the elderly, when a gunman burst into the church. The minister, and two deacons were killed and 5 others injured when the gunman started shooting during the service.
Capt. Richard Leavans of the Newton County Sherriff's Department in Neosho, Missouri, felt that the hugs of teddies would cetainly be comforting when the children returned to church. "It could have been a worse disaster, at least he let the children go...but going back to church, knowing what happened, will be tough." 25 Hugs teddies will be very welcome.
The Waite House staff was so excited and grateful to receive Hugs teddies. They'll be giving them out as they go through counseling and healing time this week. We (Jo Weyreick and fellow helpers of the Eagan Peace Chapter of Hugs in Minnesota) were able to take a picture with the youth counselors that were on the bus.
The students will be getting back on those busses this week and teddy bear hugs will be a welcome assist.
Jo and Tom Weyrick of the Peace Reformed Church in Eagan, Minnesota, and leaders of the Eagan - Peace Chapter of Hugs are providing over 200 teddies to help ease the anxiety of those youngsters on the school bus that rested perilessly close to the edge of disaster.
The youngsters, on a swimming trip with Waite House, Pillsbury United Community Center, were escorted to safety by their quick thinking aids...but the anxiety lingers. The thought of future bridge crossings does not rest easy on these young hearts. Thanks to the assistance of Dr. Jeannie Shur of the American Red Cross and Director Kay Cunningham of Waite House, the children will have plenty of hugs to help.