Pennsylvanians help victims of Harvey through rescue, relief and recovery

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HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Help from Pennsylvania is on the way after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas.

Harrisburg Deputy Fire Chief Mike Souder said, "It's incredible the devastation that you see when you go into places like that. You can imagine how bad it'll be. But until you get there and see it you don't recognize it, and then you go into help mode."

And that's exactly what four Harrisburg firefighters are doing as they travel with other members of Pennsylvania Task Force 1 to lend a helping hand after Hurricane Harvey.

Souder said, "The anxiety for those guys I can tell you in the trucks right now headed down the road is through the roof. They know they have to sleep. They know they have to drive. They're anticipating what's going on."

They'll be working to rescue flood victims as the water continues to rise, leaving behind nothing but devastation. And their work doesn't end once the storm ends.

Harrisburg Fire Chief Brian Enterline said, "Once the water starts to subside, they're going door to door, house by house, lot by lot, searching for victims and anything else."

The federal government will reimburse the city for the Harrisburg firefighters' time.

For Mission Central in Mechanicsburg, Cumberland County, volunteers are working to provide help in a different way.

Rob Visscher, the executive director of Mission Central said, "When folks can get back into their home, this will help them with their cleaning efforts."

They have already loaded about 2,000 buckets with cleaning supplies from sponges to clothespins that they will deliver once the storm passes.

Visscher said, "I can't imagine having everything totally wiped out. But then when you can find that dish that was grandma's and you've got the dish soap to clean it, or the clothespin and the clothesline to hang up that special rug, or different things that you can recover and restore."

Enterline said it's important to be able to help in any way you can.

He said, "Humbling from the city standpoint that we're able to send in a small way and be able to assist them."

Enterline said he's not sure if they'll have to send more firefighters out to Texas, but they will know in a couple of days.

If you'd like to volunteer or donate to Mission Central, head to their website,


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