Mac students spend spring break helping hurricane victims

May 2, 2018 | 10:58 AM

For MacMurray College first-year student Kevin Crottie, a spring break mission trip to help Hurricane Harvey victims in south Texas hit close to home.              

Crottie’s family lost nearly everything when his home in Alvin, Texas, was flooded from the storm, so he understands the humanitarian need in the area.

“It feels good to help someone who has been in the same situation as my family,” Crottie said. “I can relate to them.”

Crottie along with 10 other MacMurray College students traveled to Port Aransas, Texas, in March to help with the Hurricane Harvey rebuilding effort. The alternative spring break was part of a Fellowship of Christian Athletes mission trip.

Todd Sweatman, coordinator of religious life, and Christine Smith, director of performing arts, along with Robb Rockwell, associate pastor at Lincoln Avenue Baptist Church, led the group of Mac students.

“The experience was encouraging and very eye-opening,” Sweatman said.

It has been eight months since the hurricane made landfall in southern Texas, and in Port Aransas about 50 percent of its residents are still out of their homes. “Many of them have become frustrated and discouraged,” Sweatman said. “We wanted to take the week and serve those people, giving them some encouragement and hope by hanging drywall, painting and doing some general construction on their homes.”

Helping those in need get their lives back to normal was a life-changing experience and Crottie was especially happy to have had the opportunity. “Seeing them filled with hope also brings me hope,” he said. 

The group also spent time at a local church helping them with projects like installing fans, sanding walls and remodeling bathrooms.

Students who went on the trip were Allison Baker, Aubrey Boos, Kevin Crottie, Chilo Dore, Beth Friedrich, Ian Leib, Faythe Newberry, Judah Renfro, Greg Urbanc, Hannah Wetzel and Reagan Witherell.

Read more of the Tartan Times.