Maryland Community Brings Hope To D'Iberville Children

They looked like children who just opened a treasure chest after a doctor's visit. Book bags in all shapes and sizes covered the D'Iberville Elementary School gym. And Michaela Forsgren knew exactly which one she was looking for.

"One that has a stuffed animal in it. Or one that has cute folders," the seven year old said.

Inside 600 brand new bags were crayons, rulers and enough paper to get D'Iberville students focused on education again.

Don Cropp and a group of businessmen from St. Mary's County, Maryland saw the terrible pictures of south Mississippi's devastation. They knew they had to do something to put smiles on hurricane weary faces again.

"Oh it feels great," Cropp said.

Cropp's group bought the bags, filled them with goodies, and hauled them to the elementary school.

"It just looked like you all needed help. And we just wanted to do that," he said.

Not only do the new book bags contain school supplies, they also have little notes from children in St. Mary's County, Maryland.

One said, "Hi. I hope you get what you need. Your friend, Kelsey."

It's friends like this who make getting through this tragedy, in D'Iberville and the rest of south Mississippi, just a little easier.

So how did the St. Mary's Hurricane Relief Fund choose D'Iberville? Group members met someone in Maryland with connections to the city. So they made a phone call, and decided to focus their relief efforts on D'Iberville children.

"We've got another $20,000 to spend. Money keeps coming in from everybody," said Cropp. "We're going to bring stuff for Thanksgiving. And we're going to adopt every child in the school for Christmas."

One of those children had a message for the people back in Maryland.

"Thank you very, very much," Michaela Forsgren said. "I'm glad you did this."