“Whatever it takes,” said Hanrahan, a Lewis County resident.
Hanrahan is one of more than a dozen local Red Cross volunteers who are part of a massive response to Superstorm Sandy. They’re from the Mount Rainier Chapter of the charity, which covers Pierce, Thurston, Mason, Lewis and Grays Harbor counties. They will fan out to New York, New Jersey and West Virginia.
Spokeswoman Monica Jonen said 230 response vehicles from all over the United States – more than two-thirds of the fleet – are heading to the Eastern states affected by the storm. Seven thousand people spent Wednesday night in 115 Red Cross shelters, she said.
The volunteers will assist in shelter operations and deliver aid.
“A lot of them are going to be doing feeding, delivering, mobile feeding,” Jonen said, “handing out hot meals to the people who are affected by the hurricane.”
Hollis Monaghan was preparing to fly out of Sea-Tac Airport late Friday night and head to White Plains, N.Y., just north of New York City.
The Red Cross “asked for a minimum commitment of two weeks, told me to expect three-plus,” he said.
Monaghan said he’s able to go because he has a temporary job with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and his employer is flexible.
He said he has volunteered for the Red Cross since the beginning of the year, but his emergency-response work goes back much further.
He independently volunteered for relief work after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and he was a firefighter for 33 years.
“Anybody that thinks that they might have a skill should contact the Red Cross because they definitely can use you,” he said.
Meanwhile, Hanrahan said he has volunteered for 15 years, but this is his first big out-of-state response. He’s able to spend so much time because he’s retired. He’s said he’s ready for whatever comes his way.
“The main thing is, ‘What can I do for you?’”