I Am Local 6: Two friends heading out to help in Houston

FULTON, KY – After seeing the devastation and the victims in need of aid after Harvey flooded Houston, two friends from Fulton, Kentucky, did not hesitate to take the call from the American Red Cross.

They were deployed by the Red Cross on Friday to help with relief efforts. They will be stationed in Houston for two weeks. Before they left, they had to make sure they and their families were prepared for the mission.

Anna Pearson and Tanya Rainey

It’s homework time for Anna Pearson’s daughters. They recently moved after she found mold in her old home. She hasn’t fully unpacked yet, but that didn’t her from answering a call from the Red Cross to help in Houston. Pearson wants to set a good example for her girls by showing them how to help those in need.

“Last week I was just worried about being displaced from my home because of mold. These people are being displaced because of the massive flooding. These people don’t have anywhere to go, and it just breaks my heart,” said Pearson.

She sees it as a lesson in responsibility.

“I’m proud of what she’s going to do,” said Pearson’s daughter Layonna.

“It’s a great feeling to know that I’ll be someone’s little ray of sunshine at a time like this,” said Pearson.

Pearson is packing and trying to prepare herself as much as possible. “I’m trying to prepare my mind and my heart for what I’m about to see,” said Pearson.

Pearson may be just a little nervous about her first Red Cross deployment. But, across town, one of her friends is busy packing for the same trip.

“I need to get down there as soon as possible. I need to get down there so I can help,” said Red Cross volunteer Tanya Rainey.

Rainey is taking stuffed animals for the kids, and she’s taking her compassion with her, too. “I offer them my shoulder if they need to cry, if they need to talk. I understand,” said Rainey.

But before the two friends get there, they first have to face one of their fears. 

“I’m a nervous wreck about getting on the plane,” said Pearson.

The trip will be their first airplane ride.

“We will be there for each other’s comfort. We’ll hold each other’s hand,” said Rainey.

The two friends will take their first flight out of Barkley Regional Airport in Paducah.

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