Amidst the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy a group of off-duty firefighters, police officers and ex-military personnel started organizing efforts in Staten Island to help their less fortunate neighbors begin to clean up after the devastating flooding that occurred in that area.
The Brown Cross (the name is a reference to the dirt covering volunteers) has been working around the clock ever since. And thanks to social media word of the Brown Cross has quickly spread across New York. Last Saturday some 700 volunteers came out to help.
Efforts have now shifted from aid to clean up. Volunteer crews remove dry wall, rip up carpet and help move large furniture and appliances that have been ruined.
Though, for some like Kelly Griswold, whose parent’s home was destroyed, there isn’t much to be done.
While the sense of community is heartwarming the hard truth is that it’s going to take months or longer for life here to return to normal.