The VFW Post 3699 in Indio and the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa teamed up to help people dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Since Saturday, they received an entire ballroom worth of donations. However, they needed a truck big enough to take everything to Houston. Now, Stericycle will be donating two large semi-trucks and drivers to take everything to those in need.
Michael T. Pierson is the post commander of the VFW Post 3699 in Indio. He said people from all over the Coachella Valley donated just about everything. "Pillows, blankets, sheets, shoes, socks and food, whatever a human may need," Pierson said.
Even the JW Marriott didn’t expect they would need an entire ballroom to hold everything. "When the word got out that we were doing this, we had cars just lined up in the parking lot, just wanting to donate," said Mike Bills, the Director of Human Resources at the JW Marriott in Palm Desert. Bills said people struggling to make ends meet even gave what they could. "The farm workers, when they heard what we were doing, each of them pitched in $2 so they could buy water," he explained.
To sort through everything, volunteers from all over the valley donated their time. "They came in and saw the magnitude of the problem, and they haven’t left for three days, eight hours a day," Pierson said about the volunteers.
Now the volunteers will be loading two large semi-trucks worth of donations. "Stericyle is a company in riverside, but they’re doing work out here. They stepped up and said we have two trucks, we’ll provide the trucks and the driver," said Bills.
Pierson said the items will be driven directly to those in need. "There’s already three Veterans of Foreign War Posts south of Houston ready to receive everything," he said. Pierson said helping Texas is something he knew he had to do.
"Americans come together to help their fellow man, to help their neighbor even if their neighbor is 2,000 miles away," he said.