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Updated: Friday, 09 Sep 2011, 5:42 PM CDT
Published : Wednesday, 07 Sep 2011, 5:24 PM CDT
AUSTIN (KXAN) - As the wildfires all around central Texas continue, KXAN, The Salvation Army and Walmart will hold a two-day donation drive to help the disaster victims.
The black asphalt parking lot at the Wal-Mart store in Bastrop this week evolved into a kind of town green where fire evacuees and those who have lost homes in the enormous wildfires just outside of town come to shop and share stories.
Among them was Cecil Reynolds, who lost the home of his dreams.
“We thought it was a beautiful home in a beautiful setting in these beautiful tall pine trees here,” Reynolds said. “We've been here for almost 25 years.
“My wife designed the house; we had it built in its beautiful setting in the woods on a cul-de-sac where our mother-in-law lived across the street from us.
“It was a large home; it was a 5,000 square foot, two-story, brick, French Colonial style home.
“We got pictures of it yesterday. They haven't allowed us in to see it yet, but in the pictures the only thing left standing is the fire place, which I find oddly ironic.”
Now, Reynolds and his wife are staying in a local motel, stopping by Wal-Mart for incidentals and thinking not so much about their own troubles, but about those of their neighbors.
“We see people sleeping in the back of pickup trucks in parking lots and we're trying to figure out what we can do for them,” he said.
Donations can be made online and also in person at participating Walmarts. The donation drives at the stores will run Friday and Saturday from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m.
All of the money raised and items donated will go directly to provide for the disaster victims and the relief workers.
View Walmart drop-off sites in a larger map
“Walmart and its associates are proud to serve the communities in which we live and work, said Matt Welch,” market manager for Walmart Stores. “We hope this partnership with KXAN and the Salvation Army will help bring some relief to our neighbors and associates impacted by this fire.”
Addresses to each participating Walmart
Click here to see the list of items needed . Note: No more clothing is needed.
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