Dear Editor: On April 28, shortly after midnight, our town of Newborn was hit by a tornado. Streets were blocked by fallen trees and for several house we could not get into or out of the town.
We have already thanked and thanked again the various companies, people and entities who came to our assistance in clearing up the fallen trees and debris which littered our streets and town. Fortunately, we had no casualties.
After we were able to clear our streets, we began to analyze and schedule what was needed for recovery.
To do this we needed a great deal of help. We needed to apply to Georgia Emergency Management Administration and Federal Emergency Management Administration.
As none of us on the town board had any experience dealing with these offices and after seeing the problems with the Katrina disaster in New Orleans several years ago, I must say we were less than optimistic about what we could handle and whether we could be reimbursed for our disaster costs in any way.
There are three people, two associated with the county and one who was brought in as a specialist who you might say "saved our lives" and to whom the town owes a great debt of gratitude.
They are Trey Polk, director of Newton County Emergency/Risk Management; Jody Nolan, deputy director of Newton County Emergency/Risk Management; and Estona Middlebrooks, emergency management specialist.
These three people have not only carried the ball in writing our submittals, but because of their knowledge and assistance, we have received a major portion of the disaster payments within three months, instead of the six to 12 months that we anticipated.
We are sure that the experience with the Katrina disaster has helped with the earlier payments which we received.
As we look around the town and see how it has been cleared and brought back to normal, we again say we deeply appreciate the untiring help and assistance which these three people have given us in our hour of need and thank them again for what they have done for the town of Newborn.