NewsCovering Kentucky


Lexington hosts eastern Kentucky flood benefit events

Posted at 7:36 AM, Oct 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-12 07:44:34-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Hours before the "Kentucky Rising" benefit concert, people who've been instrumental in some of the fundraising gathered in downtown Tuesday evening to raise more money for flood victims.

172 employees at Appalachian Regional Healthcare lost their homes, so the ARH Foundation has been a big presence in the relief efforts.

Lee Ann McIntyre works in marketing at ARH. She's one of so many who lost her home.

"We went outside the backyard, climbed the mountain to a neighbor's house, and sat with them the rest of the night while pretty much watching everything go underwater," said McIntyre.

ARH clinical engineering director Brian Lucas said his family barely made it out.

"By the time we woke up, it was already to our front porch. By the time we were able to actually get outside the house, three minutes later, it was already in our house," said Lucas.

"We ended up going out the back, made a temporary bridge out of a ladder from the back deck to the bank, and we sat on the bank for two hours in the rain and the dark, and watched the house and everything get gobbled up by the flood."

They're thankful for all the help people have given so far, but they're concerned that the floods might fade from people's memory long before the recovery is complete.

"One of the fears of my community is that help is going to start dying off. It's a lot of hype at first. Right after the flood, people were coming and handing you Subway sandwiches as you were working on your house," said McIntyre. "I know that my house may not even be built fully until summer of next year. One of the fears is that this hype will die down and people won't help as much."

"The need's still there today. Those folks, I can assure you, they're still living in tents. They're still living in campers. They don't know where they're turning to next. They need help and I think we're turning that corner where they need that financial support."

ARH President and CEO Holly Phillips wants to make sure there are plenty of ways people can help.

"It's not too late to step up and continue to help us in the flood relief efforts. We're continuing to collect supplies and donations at our Lexington office as well as a distribution center in Hazard, Kentucky, as well as continuing to give financially," said Phillips.

Whatever people can give, McIntyre says, will go a long way.

"No matter whether they donate money, or material items, their time in volunteering, all of that matters. Even their prayers. We just appreciate everything that they can offer."