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Volunteers gathering items for fire victims

By BY ERIN PRADIA - EPRADIA@VICAD.COM
Sept. 9, 2011 at 4:09 a.m.

Donated water for firefighters is seen at the convention center, Wednesday in Bastrop. The fire has destroyed more than 600 homes and blackened about 45 square miles in and around Bastrop.

Amanda Lynch, 27, of Mission Valley, started an online campaign through Facebook to collect donations for victims of the fire in Bastrop.

Lynch grew up just north of Bastrop in Lexington and her many of her friends' families live in Bastrop.

"I posted something on Facebook one day and it sort of exploded into 'Victoria is going to save Bastrop all by itself,'" Lynch said.

In the first two days, Lynch and her friends filled a small trailer and her sport utility vehicle with the first round of supplies for Bastrop.

As of Friday, they filled the office at The Church at Spring Creek, 2806 N. Navarro St. Suite E, and they will be taking those supplies to Bastrop on Saturday.

Jennifer Janak, 28, Lynch and their pastor Gene Rice, have been sorting the donations and arranging to transport them to the victims of the fire.

Lynch said she is still accepting donations at various drop off sites in town including Starbucks, Papillon Salon and the homes at 806 Byron Lane and 1808 Sam Houston Drive.

Lynch said she is grateful for all the donations she has received, and at this time, they need all the volunteers they can get to help sort and prepare the donations for transport.

"We appreciate the people of Victoria coming together to support this relief drive," Lynch said. "The people in Bastrop are all very, very grateful. They help unload the supplies and sort them so they can get them out to everyone who needs them."

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