Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky,), speaking on the floor of the U.S. Senate on tornado relief efforts last month, singled out several lumberyards and home-improvement retailers for their assistance in the aftermath of last month’s tornados.
McConnell’s March 29 remarks, released by the Federal News Service, praised a number of individuals, groups and businesses who rendered aid in his home state. A series of severe tornados and funnel clouds took the lives of 24 Kentuckians. More than 300 people were injured, and many homes, churches, schools, and places of business were destroyed.
Restaurants, churches, television stations and even a soccer team stepped up with food, shelter, supplies, and volunteer hours. Among them, according to McConnell, were Knox Hardware and Pope's Lumber, which donated work and cleaning supplies.
Several Home Depot stores in Kentucky and Indiana were also singled out. District manager Becky Young and store manager Jim Householder coordinated donations of approximately $2,600. Householder’s employees were out immediately after the storm handing out paper towels, trash bags, and gloves to relief volunteers. Another district manager, Tim Choate, along with district human resource manager Lee Ann Bruce donated thousands of dollars' worth of products such as chainsaws, gloves, respirators, tarps, water, and trash bags to organizations such as the Henryville Fire Department and local United Way chapters. Store employees volunteered to assist those organizations in the recovery.
Lowe’s stores in Kentucky pitched in with donations of gloves, tarps, shovels, bleach, and other supplies to communities across Kentucky. The North Carolina retailer donated more than $300,000 to relief efforts after the storms, McConnell said. Lowe’s district manager for Kentucky, Stephen West, dispatched a group of trained employees called “Lowe’s Heroes” who volunteer their time and construction expertise.