Things That Matter

This Man Went Viral After Driving With a Grill To Serve Food to Kentucky Tornado Victims: ‘What a Blessing He Is’

Screenshot via Twitter

In the aftermath of the devastating tornadoes that struck Kentucky over the weekend and killed at least 74 people, some people are stepping up to help out their fellow human beings. And one man named Jim Finch is going above and beyond when it comes to giving back.

On Sunday, journalist Victor Ordoñez tweeted out a video of Jim Finch standing beside a grill in the middle of ground-zero of the natural disaster. 

“This man drove half an hour with a grill and a truckload of food and parked right in the middle of #Mayfield, Kentucky,” Ordoñez captioned the video. 

When asked about his act of kindness, Finch gave a humble response. “I know they don’t have no electricity, so that means they don’t have no electric, no restaurants, no running water,” said Finch to the camera. “So I just figured I’d do what I can do, show up with some food and some water.”

In a later video, he revealed that he was cooking: “hamburgers, chicken… sausage” and “eggs.” “Just really simple stuff that you can have and not have to worry about making a mess,” Finch expounded. “You know, grab-and-go type of food.”

The video instantly went viral, racking up over 40,000 retweets and almost 4,000 comments — almost all of which were positive. 

“Every once in a while there is a story that gives you back a little of your faith in humanity,” wrote one Twitter user. “Thank you Jim Finch.”

Another wrote: “What a blessing he is. He is warming hearts and bellies with his act of kindness.”

Later, Ordoñez tweeted out the chilling panorama of Mayfield, Kentucky where Finch was standing. “This was the scene right before Jim Finch, the man in the video, set up his grill,” he Tweeted. “There was later Church service in that parking lot across from him.”

The panorama that Finch was standing in showed an endless expanse of rubble and leveled buildings that gave off the air of a ghost town. 

Although tornadoes touched down throughout much of the South and the Midwest this weekend, Mayfield, Kentucky was the area that was most devastated by the tornadoes. Many of the weekend’s casualties come from employees of a candle factory that collapsed in the small town of less than 10,000 people.

On Saturday morning, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear guessed that the candle factory would be “the largest place of loss” coming out of the deadly weekend. While authorities initially guessed that as many as 70 people died in the candle factory collapse, the company, Mayfield Consumer Products, has now said that only eight deaths have since been confirmed, with an additional eight people still missing. In total, 90 of the factory employees have been located.

According to Mayfield locals, the situation is dire: “Our infrastructure is so damaged,” said Mayfield Mayor Kathy Stewart O’Nan in an interview with CBS Mornings. “We have no running water. Our water tower was lost. Our wastewater management was lost, and there’s no natural gas to the city. So we have nothing to rely on there. So that  is purely survival at this point for so many of our people.”

According to Mayfield residents, because of the size of the town, nearly everyone is grieving the loss of a loved one. It’s going to take a while for the community to fully heal. But, until then, people like Jim Finch will continue to act as guardian angels.

If you would like help the Western Kentucky victims of this weekend’s tornadoes, visit Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund here.

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