Volunteers spend Mother's Day away from families - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Volunteers spend Mother's Day away from families

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Because of the disasters in our state many who are helping with recovery are far from their families this Mother's Day.

At the American Red Cross Operation Center in Clinton it's just another work day for some working moms.

The Clinton center is filled with men and women coming together to provide food and shelter and other needs for families affected by recent tornadoes.

Of the 419 volunteers, 200 are mothers.

Dena Skelly, a 12 year volunteer from Dallas, has one son.

"I've been away from home every holiday that we have including Christmas, New Year's, birthdays, almost every year. It's ok. My family knows this is who I am, and this is what I do," said Skelly.

Retired nurse Connie Hoffer is from Littleton Colorado and is spending another Mothers Day away from home.

Last year she was hard at work in her fifth year as a volunteer.

"I was in Nashville Tennessee helping out with people who lost their homes due to flooding. I feel very blessed. I have a family who I know loves me and cares about me and contacted me to wish me a happy Mother's Day which is the most important thing," said Hoffer.

Another nurse, Ann Thornhill, is from Natchez and received flowers this Mother's Day although she has no biological children.

"The roses are from the staff of Disaster Health Services that are here in Jackson. I am the manager of this function and they all call me their mother so they brought them to me," said Thornhill.

Most of these women are deployed two to three weeks at a time in disaster areas and realize the sacrifice they are making while making a difference in the lives of other mothers who may have lost everything.

"And the Red Cross is here to assist them in any way that we can.  And we wish all the mothers a happy Mother's Day," added Thornhill.

Red Cross officials said workers in the Oxford area prepared pancakes for the mothers Sunday morning and also presented them with flowers.

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