Keller Man Collects Donations for Colorado Wildfire Victims

Hundreds of North Texans donate

By Kevin Cokely
|  Thursday, Jul 12, 2012  |  Updated 12:19 AM CDT
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A Keller man is collecting donations for the victims of the Colorado wildfires.

Kevin Cokely, NBC 5 News

A Keller man is collecting donations for the victims of the Colorado wildfires.

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North Texans are sending help to the victims of the Colorado wildfires.

The most destructive wildfire in Colorado history, the Waldo Canyon Fire, destroyed nearly 350 houses in Colorado Springs and forced 32,000 people from their homes.

In just more than a week, Jim Humphrey, of Keller, has collected donations from hundreds of North Texans.

"It's overwhelming, the calls I'm getting to come pick this up, where can I deliver this," he said. "We could take moving vans full of clothing and supplies from the state of Texas, which is just fantastic."

The Colorado Springs home of his friend, Mark Mechelse, survived the wildfires with only minor damage.

"There's a feeling of guilt that my home is standing and others are gone," he said.

More than 100 families from his church in Colorado Springs lost their homes.

"There's quite a few volunteers and quite a few churches that are pulling together and taking whatever they can get, so donations such as what Jim is putting together right now is so great simply because it continues to fill the need," Mechelse said.

"My heart just reached out to him," Humphrey said. "He's a great guy."

Humphrey is collecting more than just clothes.

"It's gift cards, it's checks, it's money (and) simple things like pots and pans and dishes and towels and linens," he said.

Keller's Christina Bynum-Breaux is donating all of the clothes she had already collected for at-risk children, confident that she would get even more.

"I really know how important it is when you have nothing, you've lost it all -- not only your belongings, but your clothing, so it does, it pulls at my heart," said Bynum-Breaux, who runs the Stepping Stones Foundation.

Humphrey leaves Friday for Colorado Springs with the first truckload of donations from North Texas but is already planning several more trips.

"We're going to have to go back in August because I can't haul enough up in one trip," he said.

To donate, call Humphrey at 817-908-1187 or visit www.kmicoloradofirevictims.org.

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