FEMA Sets Up Office in Parkersburg

By Sara Stewart, Reporter

Roger Hennings (left) calls FEMA for aid information at the Veterans Memorial Building where a call center has been set up for victims of Sunday's deadly tornado in Parkersburg on Wednesday, May 28, 2008. Hennings home was destroyed in the tornado and he trying to decide whether to rebuild. (Photo by Courtney Sargent/The Gazette)

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By Becky Ogann

PARKERSBURG - On Wednesday, people in Parkersburg began an important step in the rebuilding process. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has set up a temporary office there. And tornado victims are registering their damage in hopes that they qualify for federal aid.

A steady stream of people enter the American Legion, looking for help.

"Right now, I'm looking for some kind of temporary housing, whether it be a camper or a mobile home," said Dean Evert.

Right now, most people's homes are a total loss, like the pile of rubble that used to be the Gorter's home on the corner of Highway 57 and Johnson Street.

"We had just got done with putting a new roof on the house Saturday," said Roger Gorter, who registered his damaged property with FEMA.

Now, just four days later, he's planning to replace the entire house.

The amount people can get from FEMA is based on an individual circumstances. Most of the assistance is meant for the under insured or those without any insurance at all.

Some storm victims are asking for loans, repairs, or temporary housing.

With so much left to do, this help couldn't come at a better time. A FEMA representative says it'll be there as long as it's needed.

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