Stapleton said he doesn’t have flood insurance. No one in the neighborhood thought they needed it. His homeowners insurance representative said it would be two to three weeks before he could get out to see the damage.
“We couldn’t wait that long. Our house would have turned into a petri dish by then,” Stapleton said. His daughters already had put the word out about their situation on Facebook, but when the cleanup started Sunday, Stapleton said he couldn’t believe how many people showed up to help. People from his old job in Hazleton and more than a dozen students from Messiah College appeared at his door, asking what they could do.
The Messiah students also went next door to help Stapleton’s neighbor, Bob Byers. Byers choked up each time that he tried to talk about all of the help he was getting from friends and from people he didn’t know. As he spoke, friends drove a pickup filled with his family’s clothes to a Laundromat.
I don’t know how these particular students were organized or mobilized to help, but I’m proud of our students and their willingness to help others in our community. Note: Derry Township, or Hershey, is about 30 minutes northeast of Messiah’s Grantham campus.