Many lend helping hands in West - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Many lend helping hands in West

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People could mourn the first responders and other victims of last week's explosion because fire fighters from all over the state are in town, continuing to help.

The fire house is full of fire fighters here to provide relief to any and all residents here in West.

"Some people told us don't move to West, they're too clique-ish," said Joyce Beaubein.

Joyce Beaubein and her husband moved to the town of about 2,400 people anyway.

"The people just immediately took us in," she said.

She's been working in the Village Shoppe for eight years now.

"Everything that's going on here, the whole community supports it," Beaubein said.

The fertilizer plant explosion killed 15 people, mainly first responders, leveled people's homes and damaged store fronts.

"We had people from I don't even know where come and help clean up," she said.

This front window was just replaced.

"Everyone that's reaching out to this community, it's...overwhelming," said Jimmy Mullis.

Mullis is with the Texas A&M Forest Service.

"They are covering the fire response in the city of West at this time," Mullis said.

The fire fighters at the West Volunteer Fire Department came from fire houses across the state.

"For the people of West it's overwhelming right now, the situation they're in, but for us in the fire agencies and what we're dealing with, just seeing what's coming to them, knowing their needs, it's really overwhelming," Mullis said.

Mullis' group is also managing a donation program called "helping hands," where fire departments donate equipment.

"It's specific to West right now...the outpouring of donations and equipment has been mind-boggling," he said.

Departments from all over the United States are reaching out to donate what they can.

"I just feel like everybody loves everybody," he said.

Beaubein says when you're going through a tragedy, like so many of her neighbors, there's no place like a small town.

"We're still all family...still all family," Beaubein said

And West is a place she's proud to call home.

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