Auctioneer Ken McLeod and Tammy Livingood organized the event as a way to help Adairsville residents rebuild after the Jan. 30 storm. Livingood said donations increased in the days before the event, with even more donations arriving in the hours before the auction. Later, even after McLeod started selling items on the block, a few donations continued to trickle through the door.
“It is amazing. People are very, very giving and we just appreciate folks that have donated their items and to know it is going toward to help people who are in such need,” said Livingood. “... Over half of the victims did not have insurance, so it’s up to us — each other — to help each other and that’s what our main goal is: to help people through this hard time.”
The first item sold was a red velvet cake. Bidding started off at less than $50 before jumping to $500 and then $600 before it sold for approximately $700. A peddle car, one of the last minute donations that came in as the auction started, went for $1,000. A diamond ring valued at $2,300 sold for $850. A Bartow Christian Disaster Recovery T-shirt later went for $300.
Livingood’s donation, a paternity test from her company, Livingood Lab Services, was valued at $375, but sold for $50.
Additional funds were raised through raffles on donated items and the Lion’s Club selling food and drinks. Adairsville City Council member Buddy Bagley said all the materials, even ice, were donated by local businesses.
“I think it’s a wonderful thing. I think it’s a good thing for the community and it’s going to help out those who lost everything,” he said.
Bagley added that the auction was a good representation of how Adairsville residents can come together and support each other.
“This is the way it is. ... I believe people are seeing a need and I believe they’re coming back together like they used to. You’ve seen your brother in need, you help him out and now I think it’s all coming right back around again. It’s been amazing,” Bagley said.
Amazing also was how McLeod described the auction’s turnout.
“It’s just amazing with the support that we got and I’m just tickled to death it turned out the way it did. We always want more, you know, all we can get,” he said. “But, hey, I’m tickled to death and very satisfied with the way it went, everybody pitching and helping to get it done.
“We moved a lot of stuff today. We probably moved over 300 lots I would say. Of course, they weren’t all high-end items, good stuff, mediocre and junk, but everything sold. That was the main thing — we got it all gone.”
The money raised, Livingood said, will be given to Bartow Christian Disaster Recovery, which reportedly has a list of churches and organizations who are in need of assistance.
Affer the auction, McLeod urged county residents to continue volunteer work and help Adairsville recover. Those interested in volunteering may contact Bartow Christian Disaster Recovery at www.bartowrecovery.org.