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FORT VALLEY, Ga. – Robins FCU’s Fort Valley branch was completely demolished after a series of tornados swept through the area on the evening of Aug. 29 (see pictures on page 1). The $850 million credit union reported on its Web site that security has been guarding the branch and its “intact vaults and ATMs” since the incident occurred. Hurricane Katrina’s impact was felt in Georgia as most of the state had been under a tornado watch. A number of buildings and homes across the state reported extensive damage as tornados ripped through the area the day Katrina struck New Orleans and the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. “No member information has been compromised or lost,” Robins FCU reported on its Web site. “We are working with local contractors on clean up and salvage.” A credit union spokeswoman said John Ruffin, president/CEO of Robins FCU, and other vice presidents had been at the site most of Aug. 30 assessing the damage. “We’re waiting on the adjuster from CUNA Mutual,” the spokeswoman said at the time, adding no one was hurt as the tornado came through after business hours. The Fort Valley branch was the only one of the credit union’s 18 branches that were impacted by the tornado, she said. Members are being asked to use nearby branches in Perry, Warner Robins and Montezuma. Indeed, a catastrophe adjuster was en route to the Robins FCU branch after the credit union called CUNA Mutual Group’s disaster the morning after the damage was discovered to report the loss, according to Phil Tschudy, CUNA Mutual manager of media relations. At press time, no word was available from Georgia Credit Union Affiliates on whether other credit unions had sustained tornado damage. Robins FCU is one of Georgia’s largest serving more than 124,000 members.

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