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Local Community Member is Determined to Raise Money for the Victims of The July 16 Freak Mudslide

by Madison V. Fisler

July 23, 2013. In the wake of a natural disaster, like the one that befell the Thompson and Bailey families of Avery County, it’s hard to know what to do.

The large mudslide on NC 194 occurred after the High Country experienced massive flooding and heavy rainfall destroyed more than just a hillside and a roadway. It destroyed the homes of the Bailey and Thompson families as well. 

Photo Courtesy of Glory 1130 AM WECR
Photo Courtesy of Glory 1130 AM WECR

Though everyone survived the disaster, the homes were badly damaged and the families were left without much more than the clothes on their backs. While in many communities, the citizens would hear about it, shake their heads and move on with their lives, Avery County residents are not normal citizens. 

To help out their High Country neighbors, Madison Tapio of Avery County is heading up a bake sale to benefit the two families and to raise money to help them get through this hard time. 

The bake sale began yesterday, with donations of baked goods being made and folks turning out at the Rock Gym in Newland to stock up on goodies for a good cause. Every cent of the proceeds from the bake sale are going toward benefiting the affected families. The sale will continue today and through tomorrow, July 24 from 7-9 p.m. 

“Madison Tapio came up with this,” said Teresa Bledsoe of Avery County Chamber of Commerce. 

“You hear about people helping people across the world after natural disasters, and this is right here at home.”

Aside from the bake sale, Reaching Avery Ministry in Newland is taking donations of clothing and monetary donations to help the families, as is Quick Jack’s in Newland and the YMCA. 

“Their homes are completely destroyed,” Bledsoe said. “This is a great chance for people to help their neighbors.”