Kentucky was hard hit last week by multiple tornados and we are just now beginning to reckon the scope of the damage and loss of life. At least 74 Kentuckians in 10 counties have died, thousands of homes have been destroyed. Governor Beshear has declared a State of Emergency, the National Guard has deployed rescue teams across the State, and President Biden is on his way to survey the damage tomorrow. It seems clear that this will be remembered as the worst tornado event our Commonwealth has ever endured and our friends and neighbors in Western Kentucky have been hardest hit. We offer our prayers and support, particularly to the cities of Mayfield, Dawson Springs, and Bowling Green where dozens have died and homes have been devastated.
There will be much to do in the weeks and months ahead, but for now, the focus will be on rescue and recovery and The Temple can and must play a part in these efforts. We are gathering critical supplies for relief efforts, in partnership with the JFCS Sonny & Janet Meyer Food Pantry, which we will be driving down to Mayfield thanks to the wonderful support of our BSA Scouts in Troop 30/30GT. And all of us can play a part.
Scouts from Troop 30/30GT will be organizing pickups for the critically needed items on the list below Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm. We will be loading the supplies on “The Eagle”, Troop 30/30GT’s truck, which they will drive down to Mayfield, delivering them to needy families through the Mayfield-Graves County United Way.
Please bring the following items to The Temple Klein Center parking lot at the designated times where you will be met by Scouts from Troop 30/30GT who will help load your contributions and send them on their way to Mayfield.
- Flash Lights and Headlamps
- First Aid Medical Supplies
- Utility Gloves
- Gas Cans (empty because we cannot transport fuel that far)
- New Socks
- New Underwear
- Gently Used: Blankets, Clothes, Coats, Shoes
- Toiletries and feminine hygiene products
- Diapers (Kids and Adult all sizes)
- Baby Formula and Baby Bottles
- Unwrapped New or Gently used Toys
- Non-perishable Food
- Paper products
- Sleeping bags
For those of us who wish to make financial contributions to the relief effort, the Jewish Community of Louisville has identified the Kentucky Red Cross as a partner organization and established a fund for contributions which we can contribute to at: jewishlouisville.org/kentucky-tornado-relief-fund/.
And let us all pray for the strength and courage for those affected by this storm and for the will of our Commonwealth to rise up together and fulfill our motto: United We Stand, Divided We Fall. May the Governor’s words become our own: “We are here for you, we love you, we are praying for you.”
Rabbi Joe Rooks Rapport
Rabbi David Ariel-Joel