Sept. 11, 2001 first responder Ed Tucker recalls enduring cold nights and uncomfortable conditions while responding to the World Trade Center.
He was thankful for the warm clothing donated to him during that time, and now the former New York City firefighter began a clothing drive at his home in Lindenhurst to benefit those impacted by superstorm Sandy after it ravaged the South Shore on Monday.
Tucker and his wife Annamarie, 29, first wanted to donate their used clothing to help families stay warm in the days ahead due to mass power outages.
“People need this stuff now, not two weeks from now,” said Tucker, 51. “We’re even open to people coming to our home. If there’s anybody that needs them now we’ll meet them.”
Tucker passed the torch to the Lindenhurst Fire Department, dropping off the last batch of clothing to the Lindenhurst Pavilion Saturday at 9 a.m.
Melissa DeMayo, director of St. John’s Lutheran Nursery School in Lindenhurst, said people can also pick up items on Saturday at Lindenhurst Pavilion near Fireman’s Park through 7 p.m.
“You name it. We pretty much have it here,” said DeMayo, 30. “We have coats, women’s clothing, baby clothing, shoes, blankets, non perishables, diapers.”
DeMayo said the idea of holding a clothing drive at home is a great idea. But now more of the community is needed to help organize and sort through the clothing and items.
“I think it’s wonderful to be able to open your home up to the community and allow people to drop anything off for a great cause,” she said. “The community has really come together this week.”