Family keeps serving tornado-devastated community even after house burns down


ELON, Va. (WSET) -- It's truly amazing to see all of the heroes who emerged after the tornadoes touched down in our area on April 15.

One family, trying to help out the victims, is now dealing with their own trouble.

Like so many people, the McPhatters ran to help their neighbors, the victims of the Elon tornado.

They woke up the day after it hit on a mission to serve.

"We went out that morning and we were at a church making sandwiches to pass out to the other people volunteering for the tornadoes," said 13-year-old Eleanor McPhatter.

That day the McPhatters became victims themselves.

When crews restored their power in the Elon area, it sparked a fire in the kitchen at their home.

"At first when I came down the hill to look at my house it didn't look like anything happened," said eight-year-old Lucas McPhatter. "Then I looked inside and thought it was terrible."

Their house now burned and their belongings were gone, but the family still decided to serve their community.

"Some of the houses were I think worse than this," said Lucas. "Some of the other places didn't have insurance. So I think about them."

"Anybody who needs any help we are still, the outside of our house is here, theirs isn't," added Eleanor. "We'll do whatever we can."

They might not call their continued service to the tornado victims heroic, but sometimes just doing what's right makes you a real hero.

The McPhatters have insurance and will rebuild.

They're asking you to donate to the victims who don't have insurance.

Donations for families can be made to Madison Heights Baptist Church at 434-846-5914 or to the Amherst Chamber of Commerce at 434-946-0990.

If you want to give at the church, you can call and donate to a particular family or just make a general donation and it will be distributed among the families impacted by the tornado.

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