Knox woman gathering donations to help old friends

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KNOXVILLE (WVLT) -- Frances Moore, a Knox County social worker, helped them build their lives years ago.

Now she is trying to give hope back to those same families in Macon County, who face months of rebuilding after being struck by the worst tornadoes ti hit the south in two decades.

On Sunday, Moore started collecting pants, socks and bottles of water for the refugees.

After an afternoon of shopping, Moore had gather two cart loads of goods, which she plans to drive to Macon, one of the hardest area's hit.

It was just a few years ago that she worked with the county's social services office, and thanks to a little help from her boss, those carts are a little more full.

"Basically I just shot an email to everyone and they started saying, 'we want to do something,'" she said. "So they started sending money to the company."

The money enabled Moore to buy an extra 15 cases of water.

"We're just doing this on the fly, trying to get as much as we can together," she said. "I have $585 in cash, but I'm spending a thousand, and just hoping I'm going to able to get that money."

Moore and her co-workers were not alone.

Knoxville's Faith Lutheran Church hopes to pack it's gym with donations for the tornado victims.

"Frances called me and said lets do this," said Valerie Taylor, who then announced their effort during Sunday service. "People not only opened their wallets, but they also said 'I'll open my closet and pantry and I'll be back.'"

Among the first in line was church member Greg Larose's, whose bags were overflowing with toys and clothing.

"They're items, but there's love attached to them," he said. "There's memories and the hope is that adults, teens, and children can use those and build their own memories."

"We'll just see where it goes," said Frances Moore, "I'm think it'll be the start of something."

If you want to help, you can drop off donations at Faith Lutheran in Farragut all day, beginning at 8:00 AM.

Some of the most needed items include baby clothing and possibly a truck to take everything across the state.

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