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Fort Myers Community Showcased Their True Spirit during Hurricane Ian

We asked for Hurricane Hero nominations, and we were amazed at what number of emails we received. Our goal is to acknowledge as most of the Ian Heroes as possible. Listed below are a few of the hero nominations for Fort Myers:

Hero: Alex Dolinski – ‘Selflessly looking for those in need’
A friend forwarded me the article regarding the seek for Hurricane Ian heroes. When recognizing individuals who went above and beyond to assist friends, neighbors, and strangers within the aftermath of the storm, my friend Captain Alex Dolinski was definitely one among those people.

As soon because the storm had passed, Alex selflessly went in quest of those in need of help and supplies (not to say the time he took helping his friends and neighbors prep before the storm) − all of this after losing his wife to breast cancer the month before. Given his over 30 years of experience as a charter captain and marine mechanic, he was instrumental in fastidiously navigating the debris-filled waters of Estero Bay (with Coast Guard permission) to bring a pair who was stranded on the island to safety. He also helped many, many others by coordinating emergency supplies, providing food and water, and helping reconnect with family members that that they had not heard from.

As a member of the fishing community, he saw so many friends who owned small businesses suffering as floodwaters decimated their buildings and inventory. One in every of those businesses was Master Bait and Tackle in Bonita Springs. Alex coordinated a cookout fundraiser to assist owner Todd Dutro get emergency repairs accomplished on the constructing and to assist him restock inventory after the storm. Over 300 people attended.

My husband (a neighborhood charter captain) was having a brand new boat built, which was left in two pieces after the storm because the boat builder needed to handle damage to his own house. Not having any source of income, my husband needed to scramble to try to search out someone to assist finish the boat. Alex selflessly helped my husband trailer the 2 pieces of his boat as much as TN where they found a ship builder who had experience with that form of boat and will finish it.

I could go on and on about Alex.

HERO: Bishop Verot High School – ‘Coming to our rescue’
Our Bishop Verot High School family (staff, parents, students) got here to our rescue after the Hurricane. Our house flooded − they helped us clean out our house, chainsawed and cleaned out trees/debris in our yard, and provided resources at the varsity to incorporate − home goods, food, gift cards, toiletries, clothing, etc., in addition to emotional support. Amazing to be an element of that faculty family. We were just one among many families that they helped.

HEROES: Greg and Kelly Lambrecht – ‘Coming to our aid from afar’
These two are our heroes because we’re snowbirds, and we were in our Pennsylvania home on the time of the hurricane. We were advised that power was out in our area and the road to our house was underwater. These two were finally capable of get in our house and clean out the fridges and check for inside damage. They dragged all of the debris out of the yard. We were lucky in comparison with other residents. Greg kept us informed day by day and took pictures of the damage outside. He also made arrangements for repairs. They’re definitely our heroes.

HERO: Buckett’s Wings and More – ‘True Super-Heroes!’
I would really like to nominate Buckett’s Wings and More situated at 6301 South Pointe Blvd, Fort Myers. The present owners, Zach and Ainslie, purchased Buckett’s nine years ago and have all the time been an element of the area people full speed.

Though they were displaced − together with just a few of their employees resulting from the hurricane − they didn’t allow that to get in the best way of the commitment they’ve given to our local people. Every night for six straight weeks, helping over 40 different local restaurants and their employees, they were capable of raise over $150,000.00 that went straight into the hands of SWFL restaurants to assist their employees directly.

Buckett’s Wings and More received no tax advantages nor was this a 501C3 exemption. When I believe of what Zach and Ainslie and their amazing staff at Buckett’s went through and what they did, it makes me proud to be their friend. The team at Buckett’s Wings and More are true superheroes.

Hero: Ellen Baker – ‘Her plea to assist a small community’
After Hurricane Ian, this woman, Ellen Baker, noticed a neighborhood called Unique Circle in Fort Myers that was devastated by the hurricane. She made a plea for assistance on the Nextdoor app. She asked people to go have a look at the neighborhood for themselves to see the devastation. This was a mobile home park of primarily Hispanic families that might not understand English and had nowhere to go. That they had to stay of their damaged homes with no water or electricity for months.

At first, she asked for help getting water and food, after which it was so far more. She asked for bilingual people to help in understanding their needs. Ellen continued her efforts and pleas for help for at the least six months or more. So many individuals helped in any way they may. From giving donations to picking up donations to delivering the items to the families. It was such a coordinated effort that made an enormous difference, all due to her plea to assist a small community. During that point, she also got news stations involved, took donations from firms for food and water, and turned her own residence right into a donation center with a number of volunteers helping her take donations to that neighborhood each day! I followed her through this whole process and donated what I could.

I used to be in awe of this woman each time I’d see a post or request for help. She NEVER stopped attempting to be sure the families and youngsters got the assistance they needed. There’s a lot that she did that I am unable to put all of it in writing. I really consider that these families wouldn’t have all made it through that point without her help. She is an incredible woman and deserves to be recognized for her personal effort and time dedicated to people she didn’t know before the hurricane.

Heroes: FGCU baseball team – ‘A relentless effort’
I’d wish to nominate the members of the FGCU baseball team, who showed up day after day on Cocos Drive and did whatever they may to assist us out.

Those of us who live down Island Park Road in south Fort Myers had numerous cleansing as much as do, with none power or water. The fellows from the baseball team carried out waterlogged furniture and mattresses from houses, removed drywall, and cut up downed trees and other debris and dragged it out to the road. All of them were unfailingly polite and seemed comfortable to assist after which got here back the subsequent day and the subsequent. I’m unsure what number of days they worked in our neighborhood, but I am unable to let you know how much we appreciated it.

Heroes: Harvest Field Church – ‘Grateful for a real act of kindness’
I would really like to nominate Harvest Field Church.

Early on after the hurricane, while our small community of America Outdoors at 16900 S. Tamiami Trail, Fort Myers was devastated after the floodwaters got here and ruined many of the homes beyond repair. We drove in from Michigan to search out the saddest sight you’ll ever see. People walking around in complete shock of getting nowhere to go, nobody to show to.

Sooner or later, while carrying wet moldy home goods out to the curb, a extremely nice group of individuals offering hot food and drinks got here driving around. So grateful after we were so dirty, drained, and appreciated the sort words and food. I began talking to an exquisite man, who asked if he could have my name. He said he had someone who would really like to return help our community and had questions as to how they may help. A short while later, he got here back together with his wife Andrea. They got here out of nowhere to ask how they may help. Inside just a few days, they were in full control of helping the entire community.

They brought food every single day, driving around feeding everyone. On the weekends, they got here in from so far as Miami with crews of volunteers willing to assist anyone in need. They got here for a lot of, many weekends − different people on a regular basis. Asking for nothing and giving a lot in return. This blossomed into them having a weekly service for everybody within the social hall, providing confidence to many whose belief became hard to know, why me.

Individuals with nowhere to go, no clothes, no transportation. The miracle of life was dropped at us by this small Church of Brazilian members of a congregation who were so willing to offer every last a part of anything extra that they had to offer to our community. No words can begin to specific the way it felt…

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