socastcmsRssStartBy Greg Bishop | Illinois News NetworksocastcmsRssEnd
The National Weather Service reported a record-breaking 27 tornadoes touched down Saturday across central Illinois, and more could still be confirmed.
That’s more for the month of December than the previous record of 21 tornadoes reported in mid-December 1957.
The strongest storm hit Taylorville directly Saturday. It was an EF-3, with winds up to 155 mph. The half-mile wide twister trailed nearly 13 miles.
U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, said his hometown of 11,000 people got hit hard. Davis said he’s thankful no one died, and that the town will bounce back, but those hardest hit by the storm lived in areas that can least afford it. He said cash donations will help.
“When they have to think about paying their deductible for their homeowners’ insurance, because their porch collapsed, or because they have other damage, that can take away their ability to provide Christmas for their families,” Davis said.
The “Missions for Taylorville” fund is available to take donations through U.S. Bank in Taylorville.
While people may think food and other goods are needed during storm recovery, local officials are urging for cash donations instead. Not only is it easier to manage, but it’s also better for those affected to determine how to best use the money.
Davis said the donations to the Missions for Taylorville fund will have oversight on how the money is spent.
“They’re requiring families to come up and show that they have a need,” Davis said. “It’s a small town. We’ll know if their home has been damaged or not. And let’s help them have a good Christmas by providing that opportunity for them.”
He said 100 percent of the proceeds will go out to families most in need and coordinated by the city clerk’s office.
Volunteers looking to help with cleanup in Taylorville can do so but they must first check in with a centralized volunteer station.