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Locals Collect to Help Hurricane Sandy Victims

What began as one persons' attempt to help now has local businesses and a team of people trying to help.

The idea began in Arkansas. A woman named Lindsey Wilson decided she wanted to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy. She shared her efforts by phone with a former alumni of University of Saint Francis - Kelsey Hirmer, of Elwood.

"My dad and I were going to do something personally, but when Lindsey was doing it, I thought I would do something with her," Hirmer said.

Once Hirmer was on board, she reached out to local businesses to get support. Tyson Motors in Joliet is serving as a drop off point. Additionally, they donated a rental utility van for Hirmer and her team of volunteers to drive to Atlantic City.

The group Hirmer put together in Illinois is called 4 Girls and a Guy 4 Sandy. There will be four women and one man going on the trip to deliver the collected goods. The group has a Facebook page, where they are updating collection progress and will be updating the progress of the trip when they leave.

"Our trip is set for December 12 to 16," Hirmer said. "We are so excited to be a part of this effort and to help as much as we can. With your generosity, we will be able to make this possible and again, help as much as we possibly can."

The group is in need of food products, personal care products, feminine care and baby items. Additionally, the group has partnered up with a school in Atlantic City and could use school supplies, backpacks, etc.

"They are building from the ground up," Hirmer said. "There is nothing."

Items can be donated at Tyson Motors, 1 SW Frontage Road in Shorewood.

Businesses wishing to help by donating gift cards or gas cards for the trip down can contact Hirmer at 815-641-8132.

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