Like most people, when the remnants of Hurricane Michael swept through the Northern Neck on the night of October 11, Richard and Jeannie Kehm weren’t too concerned about weathering the storm. That all changed in an instant when a large oak tree fell on their Center Cross home. Just like that, the home and nearly everything in it were in ruins.
Jeannie Kehm recalls that night. “The front door blew open and I walked over to close it. The next thing I knew, the tree had fallen where I had just been standing. I thought that it had just gone through the front window.” But when the sun came up the next morning, Jeannie realized it was much worse. While neither she nor her husband were hurt, the house that they shared for the last 31 years was damaged beyond repair. Not knowing what else to do, the Kehms spent the next three days in their home without electricity or running water, with Jeannie salvaging and organizing what few belongings they still had during the daylight hours.
The house has since been condemned due to the extensive damage, and at the time of the storm, they had no insurance because of the age of the house. To get them back on their feet, Tappahannock resident Dawn Howeth started a Facebook campaign to collect donations. “I’ve known Jeannie since she and her husband ran the Book’n bookstore in Tappahannock for 30 years. They are the sweetest family and I wanted to do whatever I could to help them start over.” Local residents may also recognize Jeannie’s smiling face greeting you as you walk into the Tappahannock WalMart where she’s worked for the last 14 years.
For the full article pick up a copy of this weeks Northern Neck News 12/5/18