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January 9 Tornado Updates

The Carolinas were struck by multiple storms and tornadoes on January 9.   The three tornadoes we are most aware of occurred in Chapin SC, Bamburg SC, and Claremont, NC.

The Chapin tornado, an EF-1, began as a waterspout on Lake Murray and damaged a few homes.  No assistance has been requested for unmet needs, but we remain in contact with pastors in the area.

Bamburg, SC was hit with an EF-2 tornado (video here). Most of the damage was to businesses, but many residents have been affected by downed trees and power outages which caused them to lose perishable food.

While there are disaster response crews on-site clearing damage, power has been restored, and residents have shelter, the local food bank has been hit with many requests.  The Cheese and Cracker Box Food Pantry has been providing food and other assistance to residents affected by the storm.

Since most of the damage was to downtown businesses, they will likely remain busy as some residents may be out of work while their places of employment are rebuilt.  Assistance to businesses affected by disaster generally comes from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) and the SBA (Small Business Administration).

LDR Carolinas, through the SC Lutheran Synod Disaster Fund, has requested a grant of $500 to help the local food pantry as they provide food and clothing to those in need.  We suggest that congregations and individuals who want to help provide monetary support to the food pantry. 

The address for the pantry is Cheese and Cracker Box Food Pantry, PO Box 303, Bamberg SC 29003. More information about their ministry, which formed in the 1980s after a previous tornado, is available here.

Claremont, NC was struck by an EF-1 tornado which damaged several homes.  Most of these homes have been deemed a total loss. Many of these residents have been in a Red Cross shelter since the storm. St. Mark’s Lutheran Church has been helping the residents who have been displaced by providing food and other assistance as they are able.

LDR Carolinas, through the NC Lutheran Synod Disaster Fund, has requested a grant of $500 to help St. Mark’s provide food for those staying in the Red Cross shelter. As the community transitions into long term recovery, LDR Carolinas will explore additional grants through LDR. If you or your congregation wish to help, please send financial donations to St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, PO Box 550, Claremont NC 28610-0550.

For these two sites, LDR Carolinas is also in conversation with UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief), Lutheran Services Carolinas, and other VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) partners as we determine how best to be of assistance.

Financial contributions may also be made to your local synod office (marked for Disaster Response) or to Lutheran Disaster Response (

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