When Tony Alsup heard the news about Hurricane Florence hitting North and South Carolina, he immediately started fueling up his school bus. It was time for him to save some shelter animals’ lives.
Alsup is a volunteer at EARS Emergency Animal Rescue and Shelter. He first started rescuing animals during Hurricane Harvey in 2017. When Alsup learned about how many shelter animals were stuck in Houston during the hurricane, he knew he wanted to help.
Alsup bought a school bus and drove it to Texas, where he saved countless lives.
When Hurricane Irma hit Florida a few months after that, he hopped back in his bus and saved even more lives. During Hurricane Maria, he left his bus at home and traveled to Puerto Rico to help save horses.
In early September 2018, Alsup learned about Hurricane Florence. He quickly hopped into his bus and drove from his home in Tennessee to South Carolina.
Alsup got to the state just in the nick of time. He arrived in South Carolina about three days before Hurricane Florence was due to hit, and then, he began driving up and down the state, rescuing as many animals as he could.
On Facebook, he asked his followers to tell him about shelters that needed help. Over 48 hours, Alsup stopped in four different shelters. One of the shelters, Saint Frances Animal Center, wrote about Alsup on their Facebook page:
“It’s all true – Tony swooped in at 4am Wednesday morning to pick up our ‘leftovers’ – the dogs with blocky heads, the ones with heartworm. The ones no one else will ever take. And he got them to safety. Not the most conventional evacuation, but surely the one with the most heart.”
In total, Alsup saved 64 cats and dogs. Many people say his school bus is like a modern Noah’s ark!
“I’m like, look, these are lives too,” Alsup told The Washington Post. “Animals—especially shelter pets — they always have to take the back seat of the bus. But I’ll give them their own bus. If I have to I’ll pay for all the fuel, or even a boat, to get these dogs out of there.”
Good morning everyone! We were extremely busy yesterday and today is about to be as well but WE LOVE IT!!!The team of…
The day before Hurricane Florence hit, Alsup drove his bus from South Carolina to Foley, Alabama. He has a friend there who runs a private dog shelter.
The dogs and cats Alsup rescued are now all safe and dry in this shelter, and they have plenty of food and toys. Some of the animals have even been adopted already! Thanks to Alsup, these dogs are far away from the dangerous flooding in the Carolinas.
Once Alsup got the dogs and cats settled, he hopped back in his school bus and drove to North Carolina to rescue more animals. Alsup heard that many roads were flooded and impassable, but he was determined to save as many animals as he could. In a Facebook video, he talked about how he was helping animals trapped in North Carolina.
Situation report from St Paul NC area.
Posted by Tony Alsup on Sunday, September 16, 2018
Alsup has gone to incredible lengths to help animals who are stuck in harm’s way. If you’d like to help Alsup with his lifesaving work, consider donating to his organization.
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h/t: Washington Post