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Massena work crews help Waddington after damaging storm

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WADDINGTON — Massena village Department of Public Works crews have extended a helping hand to clean up debris after Monday’s severe thunderstorm uprooted and downed trees all over Waddington.

National Grid crews, Waddington Volunteer Fire Department personnel and village public works employees have already cleared most of the damage in the village’s roadways, but there is still more work to be done.

After seeing photos of the destruction in the newspaper, Massena Mayor James F. Hidy called Massena DPW Superintendent Hassan A. Fayad to see how Massena could help.

“Waddington was definitely hit the hardest,” Mr. Hidy said. “And because they had a storm of this magnitude and are getting ready for their upcoming bass tournament, we extended an offer to help them clean up the debris that Mother Nature left behind.”

The village of Waddington is asking residents to place tree limbs and brush on the curb outside their homes.

Over the next two weeks, Waddington Public Works crews will be moving through the village cleaning up the gathered debris. Massena will lend the use of its wood chipper and personnel to help with removal.

When asked whether helping Waddington would disrupt Massena’s work schedule, Mr. Fayad said that wouldn’t be an issue.

“We can forgo some of the work we’re doing to assist another community,” Mr. Fayad said. “It’s one of the things we like doing: helping other communities when they’re in need.”

Massena’s offer to help could not have come at a better time. In less than six weeks, Waddington will be hosting the Bassmaster Elite Tournament.

“It’s the biggest event in the north country’s history,” Mayor Janet M. Otto-Cassada said. “Massena’s offer to help certainly takes a lot of pressure off of us.”

Village work crews are cramming in last-minute road repair, tunneling for water pipes and electrical wires for the tournament’s main stage and tidying Whittaker Park, where the event will be held.

The event is expected to draw close to 10,000 people to the area.

“Also, we have had five new homes in the village, which will all need sewer and water lines installed,” Mrs. Otto-Cassada said.

Mrs. Otto Cassada said she can’t say enough about Massena’s show of kindness.

“We hope that we never have to reciprocate, but we will definitely return the favor if given the opportunity in the future.”

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