In 2017, DOM Keith Corrick asked Randy Morris from Lexington Park Baptist Church to be the Disaster Relief (DR) lead for the Potomac Baptist Association and he accepted. At the same time, Doug Dubois accepted the lead for MD/DE DR and he organized the state convention into six zones. The Southern Zone is also the PBA and he asked Randy to serve as the zone lead for the Southern Zone which he also accepted.
During this past year some much needed work was done on the trailer so that it could be ready to deploy if needed. John Fowler and John Hoffman performed some much needed maintenance replacing all the tires including the spare, checking the brakes and bearings, and replacing many of the exterior lights. New equipment was purchased that better outfitted the trailer for chainsaw and mud-out recovery deployments and the equipment was organized on the trailer. In July new MD/DE Convention DR logos were put on the trailer. The trailer was taken to the associational pastor meeting in early September at Hughesville Baptist Church so the pastors could see the changes that had been made and share with people in their respective congregations how the association was now ready to deploy to help people that could be affected by some form of disaster.
After Hurricane Harvey hit the Houston, Texas area, MD/DE was asked to deploy to Texas about the same time that Hurricane Irma was forecasted to possibly make a landfall on the east coast which put us on hold until we knew the track of Hurricane Irma. After Hurricane Irma made a Florida landfall, MD/DE was asked to deploy to South West Florida to the town of Immokalee, Florida. On September 17, Randy Morris and Bob Sinohui, both from Lexington Park Baptist Church pulled the trailer to Immokalee and were part of the initial 36 DR volunteers from MD/DE on site. The following weekend Bob Sinohui returned to MD and new PBA volunteers arrived: Rick Hancock, Marc Arigo, Nick Phillips, Ronny Bigham, Brian Daugherty and Troy Morgan all from Emmanuel Baptist Church; and John Fowler, John Hoffman, Jerry Bennett and Gina Allen from The Church @ St. Charles. They were on site for one week with the exception of John Hoffman who stayed two weeks and then flew home. Randy Morris pulled the trailer back to Maryland September 29-30. The PBA had about of the total volunteers that served in Immokalee mostly putting tarps on damaged roofs until the owners could have long term repairs made to their homes and trailers. Volunteers had many opportunities to share the gospel with home owners. This was our ultimate purpose in traveling so far a distance to help total strangers.
Randy Morris, PBA Disaster Relief Coordinator