God's Pit Crew remembers 20 years of service with three-day event

DANVILLE, Va. – God's Pit Crew celebrates a major milestone this year, marking 20 years of service.

Over the three-night event, God's Pit Crew is going to be taking a walk down memory lane, talking about the last 20 years of making a difference in the lives of those who have been affected by natural disasters.

They've responded to 26 different states and 12 counties, and not only do they show up and clean up debris, but they also send supplies, their "blessing buckets." 

The sold-out banquet is a long way from where the nonprofit began in 1999, when founder Randy Johnson and his family responded to tornadoes in Moore, Oklahoma.

To date, volunteers have jumped to help victims of more than 100 natural disasters. 

"We've been able to do this for so long because God's been so faithful, supply all the needs through people in Southside Virginia and all over the country and help us continue to do what we do," said Johnson. 

In preparing for the event, Johnson spent time looking back at the pivotal moments in the nonprofit's history. He says Hurricane Katrina stands out the most.

"I know the devastation caught everybody by surprise. It was so massive. It was so bad and are you going to respond like we normally do? The folks around here responded in such a way it's just absolutely overwhelming to us how many people are willing to bring a case of water and a box of diapers. We're just completely overwhelmed," said Johnson.  

Johnson adds 2017 also marked a turning point as volunteers responded to hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria in a short amount of time. And in 2018, Mother Nature didn't let up either. 

However, the work is just beginning for God's Pit Crew

"I just feel in our spirit of God's about to break some new ground," Johnson said. "We're going to be able to help more people than we ever have before,  respond more disasters, make a much larger impact in our own communities here we ever have before."  

Wednesday's event was sold out, and so are the events on Friday and Saturday. 

Don't worry; you can participate by going to the God's Pit Crew Facebook page where they'll live stream the event on Saturday starting at 6 p.m. 

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