Last week, LCC Disaster Response deployment host church through Pastor David Appold from St. Paul Lutheran Church in Paducah, Kentucky, delivered funds from generous Lutheran Church Charities donors to the pastor of Kentucky Lake Mission Church in Gilbertsville to help him and a congregation members family that were greatly affected by the devastating EF-4 Kentucky tornadoes that hit that area on December 10-11, 2021.
Kathy O’Day, LCC Director of Disaster Response, and Jamie Miller, LCC staff, had met with each of these families that received several days of chainsaw assistance from LCC L.E.R.T. teams that had deployed this past December and January.
Pastor owns a 55-acre ranch property that had the homes of his daughter and son, as well as his own on it. His daughter’s home was severely damaged, and his son’s was totally destroyed. Pastor and his son also lost about 50 head of cattle, barns, miles of pasture fencing, chicken and turkey coups, and hundreds of trees.
Pastor’s son is a young man with a family who was in the process of building a home on his parent’s ranch property. He is an excellent woodworker and has his own mill. The tornado destroyed his partially built home, barns, tools, large workshop, and vehicles. He had told us he was still regaining his strength after a long hospitalization and rehab from COVID. His wife broke her ankle while trying to salvage items after the tornado.
He was overwhelmed and sometimes emotional about the many losses he, his family, and friends have experienced, but he has a strong faith that God is with him. He was very appreciative of the time we spent there to have fellow brothers and sisters in Christ come to help him with recovery efforts.
Pastor Appold states that the son has continued to work with various volunteer groups that have been assisting their family, which is currently replacing the damaged roof on his sister’s home. He has just purchased new tools to replace the ones that had been blown away by the tornado and is still committed to his plan of using trees from the property to rebuild his home on his parent’s property.
Immediately following the tornado, and sustaining extensive damage to his own property, this pastor housed an elderly disabled couple from his congregation. The tornado totally destroyed their home and barns, causing them to lose all their belongings, vehicles, farm equipment, and animals.
The pastor stated that Mr. & Mrs. R. had recently been able to move into a rental home. Unfortunately, Mr. R. fell and broke his hip last week, which required extensive surgical repair, and will need rehab assistance for some time.
When receiving the donations, he could not believe that we would return with financial assistance for his family and that of his congregation members. He is very appreciative and sends his heartfelt thanks, prayers, and blessings for our generosity and continued willingness to bring the mercy and compassion of Christ to his community beginning their long recovery process.