Survivor Stories

Laura McKiver

The tornado on Dec 10th, 2021 took a lot from Laura McKiver, but she has not lost her love for family and her sense of gratitude for the volunteers who are helping her rebuild her life.

McKiver, a retired military veteran lost her home and all belongings in the tornado.

Her family has struggled with being displaced to a hotel in Paducah and a friends’ basement before being accepted for the Mayfield Graves County’s New Lease on Life program.

The Long Term Recovery Group (LTRG) is purchasing vacant homes around Graves County and is utilizing partners, volunteers, and donated items to make repairs and improvements. The homes are then matched with survivors in need of housing. The survivor leases the home and then has the opportunity to purchase the home after one year.

Laura’s case manager, Rose Sherron helped Laura apply for the program and has been assisting Laura with her recovery needs. “Rose is a real sweetheart! I am so proud and excited to be a part of the New Lease on Life program. I keep in touch with Rose almost every day sending her pictures of the progress on the home and getting her help as I pick out things for the home.” Laura said.

“I try to go by the home every day to thank the volunteers and help with the repairs.  I enjoy meeting new people and I want them to know how grateful I am that they are here to help.” Laura said.

A volunteer group from Pennsylvania included a 10 year-old boy that Laura befriended. “We still keep in touch! I send him pictures of the progress on the house.  He even sends me a text just to say good night sometimes!” Laura laughed.

So many homes in Mayfield are being repaired and rebuilt from volunteers across the country. It’s hard to imagine the impact these volunteers are making not only in the rebuilding process, but in restoring the spirit of our survivors.

Much progress has been made, but there is still so much work to be done. If you are interested in volunteering In Mayfield, email our volunteer coordinator Austin Avallone at or fill out our volunteer form on our website:

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Laura McKiver

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