A fast-moving storm struck middle Tennessee in the early hours of Tuesday, March 2nd. Seven tornadoes, ranging in intensity up to an EF4, touched down destroying or damaging homes, businesses, schools and churches across four counties. Precious pockets of Nashville were unrecognizable after one of the strongest and deadliest storms the country has seen in years ripped through with speeds up to 175 mph. Nearly 40,000 people were without power and thousands more were left without necessary supplies they needed.

While recovery would not be easy, the dust had barely settled before neighbors and friends hit the streets helping those in need. Even amidst a pandemic, the city came together for their own. But the good will didn’t stop at the Tennessee border. In fact, merely 180 miles north, an unlikely partnership formed between Independence Bank and their neighbor, Tin Roof Louisville, a live music and entertainment venue.

Originally rooted in Nashville, Tin Roof Corporate Office immediately started mobilizing to help their sister location and Music City.

“Moncel Allen, Director of Marketing and Social Media for Tin Roof reached out our team at St. Matthew Square and asked if they could utilize the back of our parking lot to park a box truck to collect supplies for the victims of the Nashville tornados,” said Ron Jolly, Commercial Loan Officer. “Much to his dismay, I told him they could not use the back parking lot. Rather, we wanted him to use the front parking lot to give him more exposure to Shelbyville Road and our team wanted to help in any way we could to make the event a success.”

And so a partnership began with one mission; help those impacted by the storms. It didn’t matter that St. Matthews Square and their Tin Roof neighbor were located nearly three hours from the damage. What mattered was that there were people trying desperately to pick up the pieces and survive a natural disaster and these two entities had the capacity to help.

On March 6th, donations were accepted at Independence Bank’s St. Matthew’s location, along with two other drop off spots in the city. Members of the community contributed items such as baby formula and diapers, flash lights, bottled water, hygiene products and other essential items. The St. Matthews team worked in groups to help load a box truck donated by a local business with supplies dropped off. Together, they were able to donate over $500 worth of supplies ourselves, including bottled water.

Thanks to the organization of Tin Roof, support from local businesses and the generosity of community members in St. Matthews, Independence Bank’s drop off location alone filled a 20-foot box truck and a 6 foot by 10-foot trailer. But perhaps what they sent with those supplies south was even more important; they sent hope.