After Hurricane Sandy devastated the East Coast in October 2012, thousands of American Red Cross volunteers from around the United States traveled to New York to help with relief efforts here.
After horrific tornadoes wreaked havoc in Oklahoma earlier this week, New York is returning the favor.
Close to 50 Red Cross disaster workers from our area have deployed or are deploying to Oklahoma:
- Craig Cooper, an Advanced Public Affairs volunteer from Smithtown, N.Y., in Suffolk County, will be helping to coordinate national and local media in Okla. Craig has deployed numerous times to other Red Cross relief efforts.
- Joan Broderick, from Westhampton, N.Y., also in Suffolk County, is a long-time volunteer and disaster mental health manager. Joan has responded to 9/11, Katrina, and Sandy.
- Craig and Joan both deployed to Moore, Okla., the site of the massive tornado that struck Monday.
- Today, 14 Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) members are headed out to Oklahoma. The DART program, a partnership between the FDNY and the Red Cross, was created in 1989. DART members—active and retired firefighter and fire officers—generously volunteer their knowledge, experience and compassion to help those affected by disaster.
- Also today, 30 members of the JetBlue all-volunteer Ready Team are travelling to Oklahoma to work as part of the Red Cross relief effort. In the past, JetBlue Ready Team members have helped in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Lee, and other disasters.