ECHO, La. (KALB) - After an EF2 tornado flipped an Echo home back in March, the Richard family lost everything.
Immediately their community rushed over to help, searching through the rubble and helping them pick up the pieces; something they continued to do at benefit on Sunday.
The Echo Community Center was full of smiling faces that were eager to grab a plate of jambalaya to raise money for the Richard’s.
Volunteers also baked dozens of cakes and cupcakes, and there was a silent auction to top it off. One volunteer even made shirts to sell that read ‘together we can help our neighbor rebuild.’
Since the tornado hit, Patty Richard said they are taking it one day at a time. So far, they have cleaned up their property and are staying with a friend.
She said she was just as overwhelmed to see her community come out to support her then as she is now.
"I was never expecting anybody to jump in and help us at all,” expressed Mrs. Patty. “I'm just so amazed at how many people care in our community. Our minds have been so disturbed lately from all of this and people have just been helping us day by day. Helping us get our stuff together and letting me get back to work. They have been helping us so very much."
We were told that the community has raised nearly $15,000 for the Richard family. But if you ask the community, they’ll tell you they’re more than happy to lend a hand.
"The Sunday when everything happened and I left the hospital after checking on her, I started making phone calls, put everything on Facebook,” explained Brenda Thibodeaux, family friend and benefit coordinator. “And people were just contacting us saying ‘what can I do?’ Same thing with people coming in today (Sunday), walking in, ‘what can I do, where can I help?’"
The community isn't stopping here. They are also holding a bass tournament in Spring Bayou to give back to the Richard family.
That event will be on Saturday, April 28 from daylight until 2 p.m. at the Boggy Bayou Landing. Entry fee is $100 per team. To enter, or if you have any questions you can contact Brian at 318-359-1447, or Dundee at 318-419-4808.