12-year-old Ala. tornado victim gets "Dukes of Hazzard" surprise
TRENTON, GA. (WRCB) -- A 12-year-old tornado victim got the surprise of his life Saturday "The Dukes of Hazzard" style.
Jeratt Givens lost four family members, his home, and his entire collection of "The Dukes of Hazzard" memorabilia when an EF-4 tornado hit Jackson County, Alabama April 27th.
The Givens' home and their relatives' next door were leveled by the tornado. The 12-year-old lost his grandparents and aunt that day, so it's no wonder his community stepped up to help when they found out about his passion for the 80's T. V. show "The Dukes of Hazzard".
Givens didn't say very much when the Hazzard County Sheriff and General Lee cars pulled up right in front of him Saturday afternoon, he was too busy looking.
"It all happened and just my mind exploded," Givens says with a smile.
Once it all sinks in, the self proclaimed 'biggest Dukes of Hazzard fan ever' is all smiles.
"I was going 'wow'," Givens says. "Where did all this stuff come from?"
The answer is from other fans all over the world. "He got a lot," says Rusty Cash with 'Hazzard Live' out of Athens, Tennessee.
Cash and his partners show their four cars modeled after the "The Dukes of Hazzard" and sell memorabilia on the side. Saturday Rusty Cash arrived dressed as the "Boss Hogg" character on the show. "What touched me was the thought that it could have been my son," Cash says.
"One of my friends on Facebook sent me a link saying a young man in Alabama needed help," Cash says. Momentum to help the Givens family grew from there with some added help from Eyewitness News Anchor David Carroll. David put the story on his Facebook page, and said the response "was overwhelming. People I'd never heard of were asking how they could send their Dukes t-shirts, DVDs, model cars, you name it. For several days, people were bringing items to the front desk at Channel 3."
Givens' story of losing his home, family members and treasured collection touched more than the partners at 'Hazzard Live'. It wasn't long before the memorabilia donations started coming in, for Givens' parents it's a little relief in the midst devastation.
"Thank you to everyone that helped make this happen for Jeratt," Christie Givens says. "You just don't know how much it means to us."