Freed-Hardeman University students raise donations for tornado victims

CHESTER COUNTY, Tenn. — If you go to the campus of Freed-Hardeman University, you would see students on their skateboards, playing Frisbee on the lawn and hurrying off to class.

You would also see students getting ready to help those impacted by disaster.

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“So many people, even with their busy schedules and even with their school work, they realize that there is a need and they realize that this is bigger than them, and they decided to be a part of it,” said FHU freshman Patrick Frans.

After tornadoes took more than 20 lives and destroyed multiple homes earlier this week, more than 100 students will be going to Nashville, Cookeville and Mt. Juliet.

Mt. Juliet is a place freshman Patrick Frans knows all too well.

“It’s a place that hits close to home to me because it is my home, and I know so many loving people there who lost their lives and ended up losing their homes,” Frans said.

“A lot of our friends and family are affected. Alumni at this school are heavily affected and several people that passed away have been from this school that we know,” said FHU junior Joshua Waffird.

Along with the students at Freed-Hardeman University, more than 30 businesses and churches have pitched in whether that’s monetary or donations. One church is even supplying the van that will be carrying supplies to Nashville.

“It shows how much everyone cares, you don’t even have to know people in another part of the state or another part of a country or world but you can still make an impact, even if you’re not there,” Waffird said.

The students will be taking donations including gloves, tarps and even bins for impacted residents searching for belongings among the debris.

The first group of volunteers will be leaving for Middle Tennessee on Friday morning.

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