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A Northern Kentucky kid saw storm damage on TV and filled a U-Haul with donations

NKY kid raises donation for Taylor County
Posted at 12:00 PM, Dec 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-22 12:00:59-05

FLORENCE, Ky. — When 11-year-old Andrew Crawford saw the storm damage across western and central Kentucky last weekend, he was upset and felt like he wanted to do something. It turned into a overwhelming donation drive, a trip to Taylor County, and a cat named Storm.

"Every now and then I get a spark, but it means more this year to see kids down in Taylor County play with these toys and unwrap them," said Owen.

After a EF-3 tornado ripped though part of Taylor County, his mom's friend was posting updates about the damage - and her concern for her students in the local schools there.

"She just is at a loss for her children that she teaches," said Holly Crawford. "So Owen of course seen that on Facebook, seen me upset about it, he was also upset about it."

Together, they hatched a plan to use Facebook, family, and friends to solicit donations - and Christmas gifts - for the people of Taylor County. The called it Operation: Special Delivery.

"The first night we started this, we're like 'OK maybe we can just pack up our little SUV and bring it on down,'" Owen said. "But after the first couple nights we realized we're going to have to rent a U-Haul."

Operation Special Delivery
11-year-old Owen Campbell raised donations for Taylor County tornado victims.

Not only did the the U-Haul fill up, but there were piles of donations sitting inside Bourbon House Pizza in Florence on Sunday night, hours before the Crawfords hit the road to Taylor County.

Holly was a proud mom, as any parent would be. She called him a Christmas miracle.

"The doctors told us that we were never supposed to even have children so to have Owen is truly a blessing," she said. "It humbles us to be his parents."

The Crawfords hit the road Monday to take toys, clothes, and toiletries to storm victims. Holly posted about the experience, saying the families were grateful for the items and Christmas gifts. Owen got a gift from Taylor County, too: A kitten he named Storm.

Owen and Storm
11-year-old Owen Crawford delivered toys and donations to Taylor County tornado victims, and returned to Boone County with a kitten he named Storm.

"Anything matters at this point," Owen said. "We're all in our bubble and we should come together and help people out."