Ameren says thank you

Sunday, February 24, 2008

By Jean Mason

The ice storm of Feb. 11 and 12 was miserable, not only for the thousands of customers who struggled when their power was knocked out by the storm, but also for those working to restore power, to provide shelter, to clean roads and to share information on progress. We appreciate our customers' patience and understanding and their kindness to our crews as they worked night and day to restore power. The only way to succeed in such an event is to rely on each other for help. I'd like to thank:

The city workers who cleared roads so our trucks could get through to restore power in Cape Girardeau, Dexter, Charleston and Scott City.

The police, who came to block roads so crews could work safely.

The Osage Community Centre, Cape First Assembly of God and the Dexter Wal-Mart for allowing us to set up staging sites and command centers in their parking lots.

Honey Baked Ham for working through the night preparing box lunches to be passed out to the workers each day.

Southeast Missouri State University, which allowed the use of the Show Me Center lot for truck parking while crews had breakfast and dinner in Towers cafeteria.

The university bus drivers who shuttled workers from the Show Me Center to the Towers cafeteria.

Chartwell's Dining and Catering for stepping up with short notice to feed hungry workers.

The A.C. Brase Arena for providing parking and dining space Thursday night.

The hotels and motels from Festus to Dexter and every town in between that showed good old southern hospitality to all the workers we housed in their facilities.

The Red Cross for providing us with cots and blankets.

St. Anthony's Catholic Church for letting us set up cots in case we didn't find enough hotel rooms.

The media who kept our customers informed of our progress.

Our customers for the kindness you showed each other and the patience you had toward those who worked to restore power.

And last, but certainly not least, the 1,110 workers who came to assist us in the restoration efforts, including AmerenUE workers from all over Missouri, Asplundh Construction, J.F. Electric, Kansas City Power & Light, PAR Construction, Nelson Tree Service and Shade Tree Service.

With the help of all of these people and organizations, AmerenUE SEMO Division met its goal of restoring power to nearly all customers by Thursday evening.

Please accept my sincere thanks to everyone involved and to all the customers who patiently waited and were so understanding as we battled Mother Nature.

Great job!

Jean Mason of Cape Girardeau is the manager of the SEMO Division of AmerenUE.

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