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Arkansas family adopts Christmas lists for those impacted by tornado

Amid the debris, Arkansans find hope in helping one another this holiday season.

MONETTE, Ark. — Communities is northeast Arkansas are still working to rebuild after this weekend's tornadoes.

And this close to Christmas, residents are coming together to make sure the storm impacts the holidays as little as possible.

In the days following the tornadoes that ripped through middle America, people are just starting to assess the damage of their homes. People like Pam Holden in Monette, Arkansas are just starting to go through their belongings.

“I mean we were so devastated I couldn’t think straight,” she said.

Holden said she hasn’t even looked at her torn up attic yet.

But instead of focusing on what she’s lost, she’s looking to the helpers, sharing “It was a scary thing, but everybody pulls together in this town, they do.”

Helpers not just in Monette, but coming from all over. This including Claire Johnson and her mom Diane from neighboring town of Paragould.

“We’re hoping to be Santa's helpers,” Diane Johnson said.

So in a Facebook group that’s looking to connect people with lost items, (Quad State Tornado Found Items), Claire and Diane wanted to connect with anyone who needed help with this year’s Christmas list.

“I mean, I don’t need presents under my tree, I have everything I could possibly want and need and they don’t have anything. And it’s just so devastating. And if that were to happen to me I would want the same in return,” Claire said.

The Johnson’s have adopted at least one Missouri family so far as they look to help wherever they can.

“We got the little girl a Christmas outfit, it’s so cute,” Claire shared in front of shopping bags full of toys. The toys that Claire plans to spend most of her last paycheck on.

And from Missouri to Monette, amid the debris, Arkansans work to find hope in helping one another this holiday season.

That spirit Pam Holden believes in as she searches for her belongings down the street.

“You’re not gonna stop Christmas from coming because that’s just not gonna happen. We’re going to go right on and have Christmas… Even through the tornado, it doesn’t matter, the Christmas spirit will be here,” Holden said.