‘God blessed us to bless other people’: Charlotte Army veteran speaks about helping with Hurricane Laura relief efforts

Veteran organizes Hurricane Laura relief

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - There are still thousands of people without power in Texas and Louisiana because of Hurricane Laura’s path of destruction.

People from all over the country have volunteered to assist with relief efforts.

One of those people is Charlotte resident and United States Army veteran Curtis Drafton.

Drafton, the founder of The US Veterans Hall of Fame, volunteered to travel to the Gulf with other military veterans.

His organization is to pay public tribute to the men and women of prior military service who exemplify great character and service.

He said he was in Louisiana as the storm made landfall.

“When you realize that you have zero control, all you can do is basically sit there and watch the wind, watch the rain, hunker down, drop an anchor – you do gain an extra respect of almost godlike status,” said Drafton.

The military veteran explained to WBTV why he wanted to volunteer his services, noting that United States veterans always want to help protect their country.

“At the end of the day, it’s the Good Samaritan rule. God blessed us to bless other people and for us, as veterans, we don’t feel easy sleeping at night knowing that someone else is in distress,” said Drafton.

He said he and his colleagues spent several days in the Gulf assisting with rescues, recovery operations and relief efforts.

“We get to come in with 35-foot or 53-foot trailers of food, hygiene, supplies, clothing, and the people who lost everything, now they have a start,” said Drafton.

The veteran acknowledged that the damage will take many families a long time to overcome.

“At the end of the day, we get to leave, you know we get to roll out after about a week or two and maybe come back and assess and try to help with relief, but now this is there new reality,” said Drafton. “They’re gonna wake up seven days a week to ‘my house used to be there’, ‘my school used to be there’, ‘my job used to be there’. It’s all ‘used to be’.”

He said he plans to return to the Gulf to continue helping with relief efforts.

Drafton said he is organizing a food and supply drive to assist those who are in need.

Anyone interested in assisting the US Veterans Hall of Fame can contact Drafton through https://www.usvetshalloffame.org/.

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