Chicago brothers help Flint residents by supplying water during crisis

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Two brothers from Chicago are lending a hand to the people of Flint, Michigan.

La'Monte and Nate Williams say they have been following the lead contamination crisis in the city's drinking water and are collecting money from family and friends to purchase water for residents.

Once they handed out all the water they purchased, they would drive back and forth to a Walmart to buy more.

The brothers say there's no hidden agenda behind their trip, and that they just saw that people needed help and they were in the position to give it.

"People need water. You can't go three days without drinking water and if you can come out here and help, I've been met with nothing but love, my little brother has been met with nothing but love and everyone seems to appreciate just two guys coming from Chicago helping out,” La’mont said.

They aren't alone. Founder of Craig’s list Craig Newmark, Sean 'Diddy; Combs and Mark Wahlberg are all donating money and water. Those donations come as the investigation into what went wrong, and when, kicks into full gear.

Michigan’s attorney general Bill Schuette announced a former prosecutor and a retired head of the Detroit FBI will play key roles. They will look into whether laws were broken.

the city of flint is still reeling from the contamination of its water supply. thousands of residents exposed to toxic levels of rust, iron and lead want to know when the problem will be solved, and who's to blame.
"This independent investigation will be high performance and the chips fall where they may,” said Schuette.

Michigan’s attorney general has named former prosecutor Todd Flood and former FBI agent Andy Arena as the lead investigators. He says they'll have total independence and all the resources they need.

schuette says he's also looking into ways to make sure flint residents don't get charged for water that could be making them sick.

"I certainly would not bathe a new born child or young infant in this bad water.  And if you can't drink the bad water, you shouldn't pay for it,” he said.

The disaster is also putting Michigan Governor Rick Snyder on the political hot seat with everyone from presidential candidates to celebrities calling for him to step down.

Snyder is apologizing, and blaming the crisis on state employees who should have used more common sense when the problem was first detected.

"I feel terrible about that. I mean, that's what drives you crazy about this. Most state employees are fabulous people, working hard, but in this particular case, there was a serious cultural problem,” Snyder said.

The population of Flint, Michigan has plummeted in the past few years. But the city still holds a hundred thousand people, and everyone needs to drink, eat and wash.

So, they're going to need the bottled water to keep coming.

On Tuesday, another group of Chicagoans will deliver 1500 more cases of bottled water to the city, thanks to a donation from Ultra Foods.

A Chicago firefighter -- Eric Washington -- says he's also collected more than $15,000 in just the past week to buy water for Flint.

Plus, the Will County Sheriff's department is hosting a water drive where you can drop off cash or water donations at the sheriff's office, courthouse or detention center.

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