Trying to round up this week’s news was no easy task. Hurricane Florence made landfall today, pummeling the Carolinas with strong winds, heavy rain and dangerous tidal surges. The American Red Cross is providing safe shelter and comfort for evacuees across six states, where more than 20,000 people sought refuge from the storm’s wrath in emergency shelters on Thursday night.

At the time of this post, 31 disaster workers from Eastern New York have joined approximately 2,000 other Red Crossers from all over the country to help shelter, feed and support people affected by Hurricane Florence.

Local media outlets around the region caught up with many of these volunteers before they departed, and are continuing to keep in touch with them as they carry out the Red Cross mission. In case you missed any of these stories, here’s a recap of everything we could find! (Click the hyperlinks to view full articles/videos):

  • Mike Tripodi of Loudonville is currently deployed as a Disability Integration Advisor in Virginia. NewsChannel 13 and CBS6 Albany connected with him before his departure, and CBS6 followed up with a Skype interview upon Mike’s arrival.
  • News10 ABC in Albany caught up with Don Lamanna of Oneonta before he flew out to North Carolina on Tuesday, did a LIVE interview with Bobby Domanico of Halfmoon (see below), and then connected with Rich Hajeris of Albany via FaceTime from Raleigh, NC.
  • Our Mohawk Valley Disaster Program Manager Adam Hohl is providing Operations Management support in North Carolina now. He checked in with WKTV, WUTQ, and WUTR before his departure.
  • In the North Country, WWNY TV visited our Watertown office to see off a whole group of volunteers as they deployed on Tuesday. The Watertown Daily Times caught up with Executive Director Jane Gendron, and NBC5 in Plattsburgh connected with Bob Fitzgerald of Rouses Point before he took off for South Carolina on Wednesday.
  • Also on Wednesday, staff members Lauren Whitman and Josh Moskowitz were deployed to North Carolina. They checked in with CBS6 Albany and NewsChannel 13 before their trip, and we’re expecting additional updates from them soon!
  • The Albany Times Union ran a story on Wednesday featuring updates from Mike Tripodi, Lauren Whitman, and Jose Santiago of Kerhonksen who is currently deployed to North Carolina.
  • On the same day, The Saratogian ran a story about local volunteers deployed to help with Hurricane Florence, and spoke with Jennifer Coffey, wife of our Chief Development Officer, Kevin Coffey, who is currently deployed in South Carolina. We particularly loved this angle, because the families who give up their loved ones for weeks at a time in service to the Red Cross are heroes to us, too.
  • As Hurricane Florence made landfall today, we spent the morning talking with News10 ABC and Spectrum News in Albany about the latest updates we’d received and how people locally could start to help. CBS6 Albany touched base with our Chief Operating Officer, Ed Cubanski, before he boarded a plane to South Carolina. And Mary Carol Yoshino of Hamilton checked in with WKTV from her current post in North Charleston, SC.

Also this week, our fundraising campaign with Price Chopper/Market 32 and NewsChannel 13 was updated to focus on Hurricane Florence. Now, from September 14 through September 30, you can donate $1 or $5 at any Price Chopper/Market 32 checkout to help people affected by Hurricane Florence. Price Chopper/Market 32 will forward 100% of all donations collected during this time period, and will match these donations up to $5,000, in addition to the $5,000 they have already matched for Disaster Relief!

We would be remiss if we didn’t close out this recap with a summary of the disaster response activity that has been carried out locally this week, even as all eyes were on Florence. Since last Friday, our Disaster Action Team volunteers responded to eight local fires, providing emergency assistance to a total of 29 people.

Our dedicated volunteers are going above and beyond to alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies here at home and across the Southeast/Mid-Atlantic. We couldn’t be prouder of the incredible work they are doing, and we’ll continue to share news from them often. Make sure you’re following us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for all the latest!

The American Red Cross Eastern New York Region is made up of approximately 1,800 volunteers serving 24 counties in Upstate New York. With a wide array of programs and services being offered throughout the year, there’s usually a lot going on! We share regular updates on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more…but just in case you miss any of that, use our weekly roundup to catch up on the highlights! Did we miss something worth sharing? Email us anytime at!