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By Erin Smith

When there is an emergency, neighbors work together to help each other.

On Monday morning, Colly Creek overflowed its banks along NC 41 East. As the Merritt family and friends gathered to move equipment out of the shop at Merritt Brothers, they were also helping their neighbors. They took the time to take their equipment and move a family and their belongings to higher ground as well.

In the midst of their own emergency, a friend of the Merritt family called with his own emergency — he needed help to get to his farm. Pedro and Perry Merritt didn’t have to think twice when Dale Murphy called. They put down what they were doing and began loading equipment onto trailers.

“They are in a bad way,” said Pedro Merritt.

Murphy and Greg Horrell could not access their farms to check on their livestock, and the Merritt family decided to try to find a way around the flooded rivers and washed out roads to reach them. They rolled out of Colly Creek on Monday afternoon, with equipment needed to repair damaged roads to the farms.

It wasn’t just the Merritt Brothers who were helping neighbors out in Bladen County. Colly Chapel Church was preparing to feed line crews who were working in the area, while the Foundation Bible Church was offering meals to residents in Elizabethtown. The White Lake Christian Camp is housing utility crews and the Elizabethtown airport is hosting a USAR team. The Bladenboro Fire Department is also families with needed supplies.

Throughout the county, many neighbors were coming together to help clean up yards, offering meals or simply offering each other comfort.

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