Miami U. football team helps clean up tornado debris in Beavercreek

Miami University’s football team canceled summer workouts on Friday to help clean up damage in Beavercreek left by the Memorial Day tornadoes.

About 50 players drove from Oxford Friday morning to help residents remove tree branches and other debris from their damaged homes. The football team volunteered in tandem with the Miamisburg High School men’s and women’s lacrosse teams and 3n1 Tree Service.

The idea came from Jadon Furlow, a sophomore cornerback at Miami who grew up in Dayton and attended Belmont High School. He told Miami’s director of football operations Matt Yoches that Beavercreek residents were cleaning up their homes this week, so Yoches and coach Chuck Martin quickly gathered a group to help.

Furlow said he would still have come even if workouts weren’t canceled. He wanted to give back to the city that helped him get to where he is today, he said.

“We’re just trying to show that we’re here,” Furlow said. “We’re here as a helping hand for people, to show that they’re not alone.”

Fortunately, the tornadoes missed Furlow’s home.

The Miami football team has a history of volunteering for those in need. In 2005, the team traveled to Mississippi to help rebuild after Hurricane Katrina.

“When we recruit kids, we talk about being the best football player, being the best student, but also being the best person you can be,” Martin said. “That’s kind of our litmus test. If you can help somebody out, if you can’t figure out a reason why you wouldn’t do it, you probably should do it.”

Miamisburg men’s lacrosse Coach John Kuehnle said the team came to Beavercreek with “hammers, gloves and boots” to help out.

“These people all had homes on Saturday and Sunday morning, you know, and everything went sideways, literally, that night,” Kuehnle said. “We’re local, we’re here. They’re rivals of us on the field, but we’re family every time else. We’re ready to help whenever they need.”

Dayton area residents are encouraged to volunteer or donate to organizations putting together relief efforts for Dayton and surrounding areas.

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