By Jessica Bowman – email
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - The governor has declared a state of emergency in Mississippi because of the dangerously cold weather. Signs of that extreme cold are already showing in our state. In Lauderdale County, authorities report that a man died of hypothermia.
On the coast, one of the shelters available is at the Good Deeds Community Center on Madison Street in Gulfport. Cots serve as makeshift beds night after night.
Josh Joachim is the Executive Director of the American Red Cross Mississippi Gulf Coast Chapter.
"We have our cold weather shelter open for residents in our communities who have in adequate heating source available to them," Joachim said. "Salvation Army is providing our dinner, our meals."
Many at the shelter called it a blessing and a place of refuge as the dangerously cold weather continues to move in.
"It's my second night here and I plan to stay here till I can get the rest of my money to get my power on," shelter resident Daniel Carter said.
This Friday, the shelter will move to the Isaiah Fredericks Community Center in Gulfport.
"County officials have allowed us to use that facility as another shelter site," Joachim said. "It's relatively close to this one and convenient for the residents who are here now."
If you are in need of somewhere warm to stay, the Good Deeds Community Center will stay open until Friday morning at 9. The shelter will then move to the Isaiah Fredericks Community Center on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. The doors will open at the new location Friday night at 5.
Free transportation will be provided to the shelters by CTA buses, and the Gulfport Police Department is also taking individuals in need to shelter sites.
All American Red Cross services are free to the public.