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Local business donating water to Flint

Antonio Murphy, owner of Only 1st Impressions barbershop, stands with cases of water donated for the people of Flint, Michigan. The shop started collecting water for Flint on Monday of last week.

Antonio Murphy, owner of Only 1st Impressions barbershop, stands with cases of water donated for the people of Flint, Michigan. The shop started collecting water for Flint on Monday of last week.

More than 5,000 bottles donated

On Saturday, a U-Haul truck filled with water bottles will head from Ironton to Flint, Michigan, as Only 1st Impressions barbershop has been collecting water since Monday of last week.

The people of Flint have been dealing with a water crisis, where high lead contamination levels were found, and have limited access to clean water.

“I talked to a couple of my friends, and we got the idea to help the people in Flint,” Antonio Murphy, owner of Only 1st Impressions, said. “Only 1st Impressions is just a platform, and we’re taking advantage of that platform to make a difference.”

Murphy said Ironton resident Cathryn Harbolt donated the first couple of cases and the drive grew from there. Derrick Daniels, a representative from Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign, also stopped by the shop to donate water.

“I want to thank everyone who has been a part of the drive and donated water,” Murphy said. “We couldn’t have done it without them.”

Murphy has owned Only 1st Impressions for almost two years and said the shop likes doing things to give back, including conducting the “Kingz of the Kourtz” basketball tournament on the outdoor courts on Ninth Street in May, which this year will give children ages 10-17 opportunities for scholarships.

Murphy, along with Marc Carter, Felipe Beach, Tyrone Allen and Charles Dufore will take the U-Haul to the Flint Food Bank on Saturday. The truck will leave at noon, but anyone wishing to still donate water can drop it off at the shop by 10 a.m. Saturday. As of Thursday morning, more than 5,000 water bottles have been collected. Only 1st Impressions is located at 311 Vernon Street near the Ironton City Center.