Turns out the quickest way from Hutchinson, Kansas, to Verdigre is through the heart of Texas.
Lee Campbell gladly donated two semi loads of hay to flood devastated Verdigre, but he needed someone to hall it from Kansas. That’s when four juniors from Hill Country Christian High School volunteered for the 1,000-mile trip from San Marcos, Texas, to Knox County, Nebraska.
“Texas has had a lot of flooding in the past, so it really got me thinking about coming up here to help,” said Jeremy Crauthers, during a brief stop before crossing into Knox County. “It was time to give back.”
Crauthers said he first learned about the flooding when classmate Beau Nelson shared a video of Nebraska farmers needing help. Crauthers said the images immediately pulled at his heart, and he wanted to help.
Crauthers and Nelson, along with classmates Chase Harrison and Troy Wilks, made the trip over the weekend with Crauthers’ father, Chad, driving the semi of hay.
As if proof Crauthers was destined to be part of the effort, the day before the convoy left Texas, they were finally told their destination of Verdigre, which just happened to be where Jerry and Julie Crauthers — Chad’s parents — now live.
“Our family didn’t even know until Thursday that we were coming,” Chad said. “Actually, I didn’t even know until then either. They found out a boy named Jeremy was coming from Texas, and it sounded like us. And it’s us.”
Chad immediately agreed to haul the hay for the teens and said he was proud to be part of their effort. He said it was a great experience for all of them.
Nelson said he wanted to be part of the effort because he witnessed similar flooding in Texas a few years ago. He said people from across the nation, including Nebraska, steppedup to help Texas during its time of need.
“We witnessed it first hand, so it’s time to return the favor,” Nelson said.
Besides bringing hay and supplies on Friday night, the teens also spent time Saturday putting in fence and helping with clean up nearby.
“We’ll do whatever we can to help the people of Nebraska,” Jeremy said. “This is their time of need, and we’re here to help.”