“There’s a lot of devastation:” Wisconsin Red Cross volunteers head south to make a difference

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MILWAUKEE -- The same storm system that brought snow to southeast Wisconsin delivered tornadoes and flooding to states in the south. Now, Red Cross volunteers from all over the country are headed to the region to help -- including some from Wisconsin.

Patty Flowers, American Red Cross

Patty Flowers, American Red Cross

"There's a lot of devastation. There's a lot of loss," said Patty Flowers with the American Red Cross. "We never have to really look for people to go. They're calling us saying, 'I'm ready. Do you have something for me?'"

With so many states dealing with the aftermath of severe weather, Flowers said the Red Cross has already sent eight people from Wisconsin -- and they expect to send more in the coming days.

"It fills my heart when I see these volunteers, especially at this time of year leaving their home, leaving their families and going to help others. Every time I talk to them, they tell me how much it means to them," Flowers said.

The responsibilities of each volunteer varies based on their background, skill level and experience.

"Some of them will actually go out into neighborhoods where it's safe and distribute food and water and blankets and cleanup supplies," Flowers said.

American Red CrossFlowers said the volunteers have been trained for this. Perhaps the most important part of their training...

"They don't have anything left, no memories, no photos," said Flowers. "And letting them see that there is going to be a difference, but there's hope, is what's so special for all of us to be able to do."

**Embargo: St. Louis, MO** Flood waters cover businesses over Union, Missouri on Tuesday.

**Embargo: St. Louis, MO**
Flood waters cover businesses over Union, Missouri on Tuesday.

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