ST. LOUIS (5/3/11)--Missouri credit unions helped the state and its residents get back on their feet after a series of tornadoes touched down in the state April 22. An F4-rated tornado swept through St. Louis, leaving in its path a swath of destruction for miles, according to the Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA). Missouri credit unions in the way of the half-mile wide twister were mostly unharmed (The Missouri difference
April 29). Missouri credit unions holding events to help with the aftermath of the tornados include:
* First Community CU, Chesterfield, held a dress-down day Friday and will match all employee donations for tornado relief. To date, the amount to be donated is $4,000. * A loan sale is on the books at 1st Financial FCU, Wentzville, where members affected by the storm can apply for a 90-day no interest loan. * Neighbors CU, St. Louis, is offering assistance also. It established an Emergency Relief Loan for victims. Neighbors will donate $25 to the St. Louis Chapter of the Red Cross for every new checking account with direct deposit opened at the credit union from April 28 through May 15.
Some tornado damage reports include:
* At Vantage CU, Bridgeton, the tornado hit the building across the street, skipped over the credit union and hit the hotel just behind it. Damage to Vantage was minor. Vantage has implemented a loan special to help members finance repairs to damaged property. Vantage employees grilled lunch--hamburgers and brats--for Bridgeton police, firemen and city workers, during the recovery efforts. * At the American Airlines CU branch located just above the security area heading into Concourse C at Lambert Airport in St. Louis, Airport Manager Lindsey Beadsley’s office was smashed up with broken windows and things knocked around. No one was hurt. * CommunityAmerica CU’s branch on the Lambert Airport campus received only minor exterior damage and was closed on Saturday. Buildings directly across the road from the credit union were demolished in the storm. * In southeast Missouri, more than six inches of rain fell on Poplar Bluff, bringing the four-day total in the area to 15 inches and causing the Black River to pour over the levee in 30 places. “Poplar Bluff (Mo.) FCU is built on ground high enough that there is no impact to the credit union,” Kirk Mondy, Poplar Bluff president/CEO, told MCUA. “What has been amazing to see is how social networking like Facebook has made it easy to communicate the needs within the community. From donations of food and toiletries to help walking dogs, the community has been out in-force because of postings on Facebook.” * At Cape Regional CU, Cape Girardeau, the credit union had three inches of water in the basement. “We’ve been very lucky,” said Cape Regional President Jim Cauble. “The three sump pumps we have just couldn’t keep up with the incoming water.”