St. Johns Island is a paradise sitting in the Caribbean. One of the U.S Virgin Islands, it is less developed than neighboring St. Thomas and a favorite for people who “want to get away from it all.” With crystal clear waters, St. Johns is a prime destination for snorkelers as well. It is also United States territory, although Donald Trump, along with a number of other people fail to realize that.
No stranger to riding out bad weather, this time St. Johns took the full brunt of Hurricane Irma as a Category 5 hurricane. The island paradise that many who have visited (myself included) no longer exists.
While relief supplies and federal assistance has poured into Houston and Florida, the people of St. Johns have been pretty much abandoned. Except by one person. Famed country singer Kenny Chesney owns a home on St. Johns and lives there much of the time. Although he was not on the island when Irma struck, CNN reports that he opened his home as a sanctuary to everyone living there. Seventeen people took shelter there during the storm, and with Chesney’s help, were able to evacuate the island.
Chesney has also said that he is determined to help rebuild the island which will take, in his words “is not going to be measured in a few days, or a few weeks or a few months. Sadly, it is going to take years.” To that end, he has already started the Love For Love City Foundation to aid the residents of the U.S. and British Virgin Islands.
He sent out the following tweet on his timeline on September 11, right after Irma:
— Kenny Chesney (@kennychesney) September 11, 2017
It is appropriate that this message should be sent out on 9/11. We remember the heroes who ran into burning buildings. We remember the heroes who spent hours going through the rubble in vain search for victims. But sometimes heroes open their homes to total strangers in need. Sometimes heroes give their time and talent to help the less fortunate. Heroes are those who build, not those who tear down.
Thank you, Kenny Chesney, for showing America that we still have heroes, even if they don’t wear capes.