Carolina Forest comes to the aid of AD’s hometown

cf3Carolina Forest High School Athletic Director Tripp Satterwhite loaded up the school’s band trailer with bottled water, blankets, and other necessities before making a trip up to his hometown of Lumberton,NC, on Saturday morning.

“It has been a totally humbling experience,” Satterwhite said. “The Panther community didn’t even bat an eye when I asked for help. All anyone said was ‘What can we do?’”

Satterwhite pulled a full trailer into the parking lot of his alma mater, Lumberton High, the same school where he worked as athletic director before eventually moving to Myrtle Beach not quite two years ago.

Carolina Forest AD Tripp Satterwhite

Carolina Forest AD Tripp Satterwhite

Donations from the faculty and staff are just part of what Carolina Forest is doing to help in the recovery efforts from the flooding caused by last week’s Hurricane Matthew. When Satterwhite asked for the support of the larger community, everyone pitched in. Donations arrived from friends and neighbors around Carolina Forest, and this Thursday a donation center will be set up at the school’s home B-team and junior varsity football games to help those both in Lumberton and here in Horry County.

“We hope we can fill this trailer up again, and help as many people as we can,” Satterwhite said.

Principal Gaye Driggers says the willingness to help is part of the culture of the school.

“In the 20 years that I have been at CFHS I have witnessed the unbelievable generosity our faculty and staff have for people, whether they were a part of our community or from somewhere else,” Driggers said.

The gymnasium at Lumberton High School was packed full of supplies for flood affected families on Saturday. So much so that Satterwhite and his wife helped with inventorying what was on hand before returning home to the Myrtle Beach area to prepare for gathering more necessities this week.

“The biggest need is still personal hygiene products, diapers, wipes, and of course bottled water. There can’t be enough of that,” Satterwhite said.

With Lumberton City Councilman Burnis Wilkins stating it could be up to four weeks before city water services are restored to residents, the request for water is no surprise. Add that to the increasing number of people in Horry and Marion Counties who are displaced, and the need for supplies is even bigger.

“I have never seen our staff not deliver when the need was placed before them,” Driggers said. “This situation is no different.”

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