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Group organizes donation van to send to flood victims in Houghton County

Posted at 9:46 PM, Jun 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-21 21:47:04-04

COMSTOCK PARK, Mich. -- People in the Upper Peninsula are continuing to deal with the damage left behind from last weekend's flash floods. Now they're getting some help from West Michigan.

Images of the flooded homes and washed out roads have been shared thousands of times and have been seen by parents of Michigan Tech students and members of the Grand Rapids Jeep Club.

Julie Town has made the nine hour trip to Houghton in the Upper Peninsula many times. That’s because her daughter is a fourth year engineering student at Michigan Tech.

“She had called Sunday morning stating that the flood had occurred and all the damage and fear in her voice just said mom has to get there," said Town.

Julie jumped into action and contacted her friends at the Grand Rapids Jeep Club and also connected with other parents of Michigan Tech students on Facebook.

“She kept sending me lists of more stuff they needed in town, so I said let’s fill my Jeep, well then I got ahold of Grand Rapids jeep club which I’m apart of and they said let’s make it a night, so we started doing all the donations here.”

Julie took the van donated by Crown Motors to Vitale's on Thursday for the Jeep club’s weekly meet up where they packed it full of donations.

Michigan Tech parents also met up to drop off donations and fill up the rest of the van.

"It breaks my heart with the community up there because they’re so tight and there’s not many funds and everything available up there, so I just felt like I had to do something,” said Town.

The donations consist of everything from shovels, fans, cleaning supplies and food, just to name a few.

“Everybody’s just helping each other, they are tight knit group up there anyways, but lots of tears," said Town. "They did lose a little boy, Thatcher, so that’s been hard, but they’re getting through it, they’re strong.”

Julie is leaving first thing Friday morning with all of the donations. She’s going to be there for a few days to help with the cleanup. Another van and trailer will be leaving Sunday morning with donations. If you'd like to contribute, contact the Grand Rapids Jeep Club or email Julie at praterj1975@yahoo.com.