When Hurricane Irma devastated his native Virgin Islands, Tim Duncan was compelled to act. Even though he hails from St. Croix, which remains virtually unscathed compared to neighboring St. Thomas and St. John, it didnt prevent him from doing something that is priceless in the eyes of the people who are affected in these island paradise countries…he showed up.
According to CBS Sports, Duncan, just one week after pledging to donate $250K to the relief efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands, volunteered his time this weekend by helping with the distribution of more than 60,000 pounds of food for those in the hurricane-ravaged region.
His fundraising efforts since the hurricane hit have yielded $3 million thus far.
Retweeted Anderson Cooper 360 (@AC360): Former NBA Star Tim Duncan: Don’t forget about the Virgin Islands,…
Many people dont seem to realize that the residents of The US Virgin Islands are United States citizens as well. So, it is as imperative that we remember them just as we do those fellow Americans who have been put through the ringer in the Florida Keys and elsewhere.
We belong to them and they to us. And we must not forget them in their time of need. The initial reporting on Hurricane Irma seemed to leave them out on their own in favor of the sexier story, which focused on the storm making a direct landfall hit on the US mainland.
With Tim putting in his $1 million match and the 16,500 incredibly generous donors we have just passed $3,000,000! Every penny helps! #USVI
While the idea of Irma running interference all over Miami was horrifying, what was even worse was the notion that Irma did just that to the Virgin Islands. They literally took a Category 5 Hurricane head on. What we all feared would happen to Miami actually did happen on Duncan’s native island, and we must rally around them now and help them rebuild.
According to Governor Kenneth Mapp of the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. John is a hundred percent without power, except for standby power generation. St. Thomas has more than 90 percent without power generation. Ninety percent of St. Thomas’ distribution power line poles are on the ground. So getting power restored is going to be quite the task and could take months.
This says nothing of getting the islands back up and running so that they can resume their economic bread and butter, which is tourism. The hills known for their rich green landscapes are now brown from the winds and deforestation. The hills are subject to possible landslides as a result of what has become of the vegetation.
Trump is expected to visit the U.S. Virgin Islands to survey the “apocalyptic” destruction left in Hurricane Irma’s wake. Stacey Plaskett, U.S. Virgin Islands delegate to the House of Representatives, joins Lawrence O’Donnell to describe conditions on the ground.
But now they are facing a new problem as Hurricane Maria is taking direct aim at the islands as well. Less than two weeks after Irmas impact, the people of the Virgin Islands are bracing for even more devastation.
“It’s critical people make the tough decision to walk away from their property and take along what is most important their loved ones, said Mapp.
Day 2 Yesterday, Tim’s Team distributed 60,000 pounds of food, and raise over 3 million dollars for Virgin island disaster relief.
There are plenty of stories that involve athletes being overly decadent and self-involved. But this tale is different. Tim Duncan isnt showing up for brownie points or media attention. He simply wants to help the islands that he grew up in find their way back to flourishing as the lush, tranquil, little slice of heaven on earth that they are known for being.