Eight American Red Cross volunteers from WI headed south to assist after deadly storms

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MILWAUKEE — The American Red Cross launched a massive relief response across multiple states in the wake of the deadly storms which have been hammering communities across most of the country since before the Christmas holiday. Eight Red Cross volunteers from Wisconsin are heading south to assist.

“Red Cross disaster workers have been helping people affected by these storms since before Christmas and will continue to help them as long as needed,” stated Patty Flowers, Wisconsin’s regional CEO “We ask everyone to remember these families who have lost everything and had their holiday celebrations tragically interrupted by giving to Red Cross Disaster Relief. We depend on generous financial donations to provide comfort and hope to people in need.”

Several days of tornadoes, flooding and winter storms left behind damaged homes, downed power lines and closed highways. Red Cross and community shelters are open in Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Oregon, Illinois, Missouri, New Mexico and Oklahoma. The Red Cross is also supporting families in Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi due to severe weather and flooding.

From Wisconsin, around 160 people have deployed to help states from coast-to-coast this year.

Dean Dolence & Carol Miller both health services volunteers, flew out on Tuesday, December 29th, bound for Texas.

Barbara Parisi, from Dane County, flew to Oregon before Christmas to help ease the emotional toll so many disaster clients feel, which is only magnified around the holidays.

Red Cross officials said on Tuesday, December 29th a total of eight Wisconsinites were being deployed.

More than 1,100 homes have been damaged by storms across the affected areas and the number could increase. Hundreds of trained Red Cross disaster workers left their loved ones and homes over the holiday and opened shelters for those affected, providing meals, distributing comfort kits and clean-up supplies and meeting with those affected to help them plan their next steps.


The storm is expected to continue to affect people over the next several days with flash flooding, heavy snow, ice and freezing rain. The Red Cross urges people in the path of these storms to get ready now. Information about what people should do to prepare their household for possible flooding, tornadoes, winter storms and other weather emergencies is available at redcross.org.


The Red Cross will be helping people affected by this storm for weeks and months to come, while at the same time responding to other emergencies, including helping people whose homes are destroyed by fires. The Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters each year in the United States – the vast majority of which are home fires.

People can help by donating to Red Cross Disaster Relief to support disasters big and small by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

Potential volunteers interested in becoming a trained disaster relief worker are needed as well. All the training is free and begins in your local chapter.

To start the volunteer process please visit redcross.org/volunteer or contact the Wisconsin Office of Volunteer Services at: VolunteerWisconsin@redcross.org or by calling toll free 877-618-6628 ext. 5822.