Sandy relief efforts get overwhelming response in CNY

Cindy Seymour is still in awe of what started with a simple Facebook post. Seymour, who co-owns Laci's Tapas Bar, asked if anyone wanted to help with Hurricane Sandy relief. A few days later, Seymour and a team of volunteers were loading up a U-Haul truck with dozens of boxes of donated blankets, water and canned food. While volunteers sorted though donations on Monday morning, a steady stream of cars came up to the restaurant with even more donations.

"This just reinforces my faith in humanity - it's amazing," said Seymour.

Mary Kidd has an idea what many New York and New Jersey families are going through right now. She survived the wildfires that swept through San Diego in 2008 and Kidd came to Laci's to donate supplies she would have needed back then.

"Been though it myself so I just wanted to give. And I'm going to go home and find more stuff to give," said Kidd.

The Laci's team is headed to a Queens neighborhood heavily populated by police officers and firefighters. In addition to distributing donations, they will open a temporary restaurant to give emergency workers a chance to eat a hot meal and take a break.

"They don't have to worry about if they're going to get soup, sandwiches or coffee or whatever - because we're going to have it there for them," said volunteer Darius Middleton.

Roseanne Wood brought multiple boxes of brand new Syracuse Fire Department shirts in adult and child sizes to Laci's on Monday. Wood and other Syracuse firefighters wanted to let their fellow first responders know they have support and friends Upstate.

"If we can give it to them so they can get back on their feet and continue helping other people - it's the least we can do," said Wood.

The Laci's team was planning on bringing one truck to Queens but after seeing the outpouring of support, they are now planning another trip in two weeks.

At Summit Cars, on Hiawatha Boulevard in Syracuse, the show room is also packed with supplies for victims impacted by Sandy. Organizer Kim O'Casey said she had hoped to bring some donated clothes down to the area of New Jersey where she lives but will now need a moving company to help her bring everything down.