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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- There has been a big change in leadership in the effort to rebuild storm-ravaged Southern Indiana. The man who has led the recovery since the March 2nd tornadoes struck has resigned.
After four months literally in the eye of the storm, Pastor Rich Cheek says he's returning to his first love -- his church.
Since March 2nd, Rich Cheek has been the face of the effort to recover and rebuild. But now, he says, it's time to step aside as chairman of March 2 Recovery. "The day-to-day stuff, it's easy for me step away from that and allow somebody who, that's their full-time job, to do it," said Cheek.
Cheek's full-time job is pastor of Henryville Community Church. A job, he admits, he's neglected: "They sacrificed their pastor, and there was some turmoil. There was some hurt. Also, I think, I sacrificed some relationships, some folks who needed me at very specific times, I wasn't able to help because I was so busy with just getting people back home." Cheek says he'll spend time repairing those relationships. But at the same time, he and his church, will continue to assist the recovery effort. He's committed to a project to rebuild 100 homes: "One of the things I learned through this whole process is that it's never about the project, it's all about the people."
Relief workers say Cheek has helped the recovery move forward by keeping people unified. "That constant, kind of, let's work together. We can get this done," said March 2 Recovery vice-chair, Mary Sullivan.
Cheek says he's optimistic about Henryville's future: "I know that we have been changed. I know our town has been changed. And I do believe it's for the better."
March 2 Recovery plans to name a new chair by September 1.