Governor visits NC counties, discusses Florence relief operations

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Governor Roy Cooper visited Brunswick County to discuss relief operations. (Photo: Kylie Jones/WWAY)

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper rallied around the Cape Fear communities Saturday. He says they are still in the search and rescue phase, and that they have a long road ahead.

Governor Cooper has a lot of faith in these communities. During his visit to Brunswick and Columbus counties, he said that without the endless work of first responders, they would have lost a lot more.

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“When you have two so-called “500-year floods” within 22 months of each other, I’m not sure we’re talking about a 500-year flood anymore. We’ve got something else on our hands,” said Cooper.

Hurricane Florence rocked southeastern North Carolina. Cooper made his rounds Saturday to Brunswick and Columbus counties, and he vows to lead this recovery every step of the way.

“We’re working closely with our federal partners. We’ll try to leverage as much funding as we can. We’ll use our non-profit and faith-based groups to help. And together, I think we can pull through this,” said Cooper.

Just two years ago, Matthew barreled through. Some thought help was finally coming, but Florence brought the devastation back.

“A lot of people who have the least, get hit the most in these storms. and there a lot of people right now that simply just don’t have a place to go.”

Cooper says this time will be different. Residents like Donna Norris can already see a difference.

“Yeah, everybody was here really, really quick. I mean they were starting to work even during the hurricane it seemed like. They were coming out and working during the night,” said Norris. “We could hear them. We heard airboats behind our house and stuff like that. They were really stepping it up. They were faster than they were in Matthew and stuff.”

Cooper says it is teamwork that will make this place whole again.

“That is what being a North Carolinian, being an American, is all about,” said Cooper.