Picking up the pieces

Published 9:00 am Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Woodland Volunteer Fire Department members Todd Frazer (left) and Bill Davis combined their efforts to fill the role of Good Samaritans as they rake storm debris in the yard of a town resident. Staff Photo by Amanda VanDerBroek

In the calm Sunday morning brought after Hurricane Irene, Northampton County citizens were picking up the pieces.

And there’s plenty to pick up, as the eastern portion of the county is littered with downed trees, power lines and tree limb debris.

In Woodland, firefighter Perry Collier Jr. said the Woodland Volunteer Fire Department stayed busy Saturday as they helped to clear roads of trees and other storm-tossed matter.

“I think this was more wind damage after the ground was saturated,” he said.

Collier said at times Irene was similar to Hurricane Isabel, which occurred in 2003, but the most current storm did not flood the town as badly. Some residents on Spruce Street and Woodland Avenue did have some flooding occur.

On the other side of town, William and Edna Burkett spent Sunday morning clearing their property of tree limbs. The home suffered minor wind damage with fascia near the roof being torn off.

Mrs. Burkett said she had lived in Woodland for 53 years and Hurricane Irene was the worst she had seen.

“It was very scary,” she said.

Burkett said she was sitting in her home’s sunroom when the storm seemed to take a turn for the worse.

“I sat there and watched it, that wind; I just never have seen it like that before,” she said.

The Burketts were one of the many fortunate who had a generator to use when the power went out. They helped neighbors and those from their church, Menola Baptist Church, keep their food refrigerated and frozen.

“We had plenty of room (in our refrigerator), thank the Lord,” Mrs. Burkett said.

In Rich Square, the Rich Square United Methodist Church was spared major damage as two large trees toppled down around the church during the storm.

Makita Winston and her two children, Leya, 5, and Traz, 1, fared the storm without power by playing games and making sock puppets.

“We have a grill, so I made some burgers,” Winston said. “For breakfast we ate some cereal.”

Winston said her property was spared during the storm, but her neighbor had a tree come down in his yard.