Fox High School rallies community in flood recovery effort

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ARNOLD, MO (KTVI) - At Fox High School in Arnold, a massive collection of donations were all sparked by an eager high school junior’s text message to a teacher.

“Is there any way we could organize a food drive or something?” is a portion of what Amy Endicott found on her phone New Year’s Eve.

“The next day I called her and said, ‘This is what we’re gonna do,’ and it completely skyrocketed from there. Overwhelmingly skyrocketed,” Endicott said.

The student who got the ball rolling is Miranda Cuker, a junior who’s already joined the Army Reserve and hopes one day to be an officer in the Marine Corps. What she inspired certainly looks like a military operation. The room being used Monday to distribute donated goods was packed to edges with everything from cleaning supplies to kids clothes. And she says this is just the tip of the iceberg. There’s even more in the library.

They got so many donations over the weekend they had to start turning people away. According to Cuker, that’s what it’s all about.

“I think it’s awesome that the school is getting involved because they get to give back to their school,” she said. “They get to give back to other people in their school. It’s a great feeling, knowing that you’re helping other people and that you can help those people that are close to you.”

Some of those people were at the Arnold location, Monday, flush with stories of a week’s worth of hell.

“It’s been horrible,” Tracy Doutre said. “We were in the middle of sandbagging and I got the call that said, ‘Stop sandbagging. Just get out as much as you can.’”

She and her husband began scrambling, two young children in tow, to get the work done. That was their first example of how people around them were ready to help. The donations at Fox High School were the latest.

“From helping sandbag to helping us get stuff out of our house. We had neighbors letting us borrow their cars to put stuff in storage. It’s been…I’m just so grateful that I live here,” she said.

At the Scottrade Center, the St. Louis Blues were putting the financial power of a professional sports franchise behind the effort. They sold special seats online, donating the money to the local chapter of the American Red Cross. A charity auction and 50/50 raffle money were also being handed over to the relief agency, along with money collected by an army of volunteers working the concourses. It is all very necessary as the relief efforts will last for some time.

“Flooding is really a long process,” Eastern Missouri Red Cross Director Cindy Erickson said. “Unlike a tornado that hits, we know what the damage is, flooding is a much longer process because we’re waiting for water to recede so our disaster assessment teams can actually go in and see what the damage is.”

The Blues will be making more special tickets available with proceeds going to the Red Cross this month. For those interested in volunteering for or donating to the Red Cross, you can go here.

Also, those in need of food or clothing items can go to Fox High School in Arnold beginning at 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. They say they could use volunteers as well. Fox High is located at 51 Jeffco Blvd., Arnold, MO 63010. The phone number is 636-296-5210.