Volunteers work to help Hickory Hill residents clean up - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Nick Paranjape

Volunteers work to help Hickory Hill residents clean up

Bud Totty is a retired Memphis firefighter. These days, he drives a tractor.

"The Lord let me have that tractor and if he didn't want me to have it then he wouldn't want me to do this work for these people," Totty said.

Totty drives his tractor as a volunteer with the Union Methodist Church Disaster Response Team.

Many of the men and women on the team are retired professionals.

They said doing volunteer work like helping these residents clean-up their neighborhood is more rewarding than a regular job.

"When you're all through and everybody's exhausted and everybody feels good," Totty said.

Byron Crane worked many missions including Hurricane Katrina.

Seeing this reminds him of what he saw along the coast.

"It's a smaller area, but the devastation is the same," Crane said.

Upon arriving Friday morning, the only crews working were the volunteers.

But, by afternoon, Duan Gilliom, the Public Works Director, said city crews were on their way.

But, why three days later?

"We really wanted to give the homeowners the opportunity to get much of this debris to the street as possible before we came in with our crews," Gilliom said.

Gilliom kept his promise as city crews picked up the debris.

The volunteers kept working too. 

Click here to e-mail Nick Paranjape

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