Bottled water donated by Voss Water and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson arrive at The Salvation Army warehouse in McDonough, Georgia.

Left to right: Mark Smith, warehouse coordinator; Lanita Lloyd, emergency disaster services director; Joe Barnum, EDS deputy director.

Water from ‘The Rock’ aids Salvation Army Disaster Services

By: David Ibata

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has been a professional wrestler and pro football player and today is a world-famous actor and celebrity. To these credits, he has added another: Generous supporter of The Salvation Army in his home state of Georgia.

The Emergency Disaster Services office of The Salvation Army Georgia Division recently got word 5,000 bottles of water on two pallets were on their way from Voss Water, Johnson’s partner in gift-giving.

“During these uncertain times, there is already so much need, and now hundreds of families are displaced due to the recent tornadoes,” Johnson said in a message to the Army. “As a Georgia resident myself, it’s an honor to be able to support the work you’re doing to help the many people affected by the devastation in our area.

“We hope this Voss Water donation provides some sense of relief as you and so many others work to rebuild and get these families back into their homes.”

This story begins in February, when The Salvation Army – a member of the Georgia Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD) – got a request from the Georgia Emergency Management Agency and Homeland Security to deliver water to Summerville. A public health crisis had temporarily left the northwest Georgia city with no drinking water.

The Salvation Army rushed 26 pallets of bottled water to the area – depleting its McDonough, Georgia, warehouse of the precious liquid, said Lanita Lloyd, Georgia EDS director. Then, a few weeks later, calamity: Tornadoes ripped through north Georgia on Easter Sunday, April 12.

Salvation Army EDS units responded with food, supplies and spiritual comfort but had to draw from other agencies to provide water to storm victims.

“We put in a request with GEMA for more water,” Lloyd said. “When Dwayne Johnson called the state to ask if there was an organization in need, GEMA referred him to us.”

The bottled water arrived Thursday, May 28.

“We hope this Voss Water donation provides some sense of relief as you and so many others work to rebuild and get these families back into their homes,” Johnson said. “I’m proud to be part of this community and send you my deepest thanks for taking care of those among us who need it most now.”

The gift is earmarked for victims of the Easter tornadoes, so communities devastated by the storms have priority in receiving it, Lloyd said. “After that, in any future disaster, the water will be available for those affected and for workers providing support.”

“We’re very grateful and blessed to have supplies on hand that are most needed when disaster occurs. We’re better prepared now, thanks to Voss Water and The Rock.”