FAIRBANKS, La - (KNOE) The last thing Allen Lenard needed was a broken down pea picker. He was frantically working to harvest his purple hulls before the rains come in.
Allen Lenard works on his cargo truck before he heads to Morgan City, La to help storm victims.
That’s not even the biggest reason Lenard needs to get the peas picked. He needs to finish prepping his airboat and other equipment to head to the heart of storm Barry in south Louisiana.
“Those that take the brunt of these catastrophes are the poor, the children, the sick, the elderly,” said Allen Lenard, a volunteer with the Cajun Navy movement.
Lenard is a volunteer with the Cajun Navy movement. Running TO disasters to perform daring rescue missions. His airboat must be running properly before he gets to ground zero.
”In 2017 we were at Hurricane Harvey in Port Arthur about 70 miles per hour about the worst environmental conditions you can be in and we pulled the last people out and the boat quit," said Lenard.
Lenard takes his airboat, his refrigerated truck and his military truck, all items normally used on the farm, to the most flood-stricken areas. When he gets first wind of a natural disaster he gears up, packs up his chain saws and his patriotism and heads that way.
“You know, we're not there to cowboy or rodeo with or do something like that. We’re there to show up when they see what we have and how we handle ourselves, and say, look, here's what we got. Use us where you need us,” said Lenard.
Lenard has performed rescue missions in nearly every major natural disaster in the southeastern U.S. since Katrina.
Lenard knows when he loads up and leaves the farm and his family in Monroe that he’s rolling away from his responsibilities at home. But he also knows he’s setting an example.
“Whether you taking hay to farmers in Nebraska, or pushing, you know, the tornado damaged material out of some obscure town in Mississippi. It just becomes second nature, you know, and you know, if the kids didn't see me go that's when I'd worry what they thought about me and the example I'm setting,” said Lenard.