GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) – The Green Bay Packers flew to Nashville on Wednesday for their final preseason game – but only after loading the team airplane with generators and other emergency supplies to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Quarterback Brett Favre was among the Packers with relatives and friends in the Gulf Coast region that has been devastated by the hurricane.

Favre had the blessing of coach Mike Sherman to drive a truck with supplies to Hattiesburg, Miss., where his wife and children were at home, after the team got to Nashville. But with many of the roads in Mississippi impassable and the airports closed, Favre reconsidered.

For now, “what I’ve done is try to get the word out,” he said. Favre, with the help of equipment manager Red Batty, rounded up supplies, including generators, food and water, that were loaded onto the chartered plane.

“When we get to Nashville, there’s going to be a guy who drives (the supplies) to Hattiesburg,” Favre said after the team has a workout in the Don Hutson Center.

“From there, hopefully, we can disperse this even further south.”

“To think that we’re going to try to play football and enjoy it, it’s difficult.

Favre’s childhood home in the Gulf Coast town of Kiln, Miss., was destroyed by the storm.

Wide receiver Javon Walker also was among the players profoundly affected by the disaster.

He said he received a phone call Wednesday morning from his mother.

She informed him that his grandparents and two uncles can’t be found in Moss Point, Miss., which is just outside Biloxi.

Walker’s parents drove from their home in Texas to search for Lucille and Paul Goldsmith, both of whom are in their 80s, and their sons, Paul and Earl Goldsmith.

“Obviously, dealing with what they’re going through, it puts a lot of things in perspective for me, as far as family and friends,” Walker said. “I just want them to be safe because sometimes, you take for granted what our grandparents do for us.”

“I’m just going to pray for them and hope that everything is OK.”

With lines of communication wiped out, Packers linebacker Ray Thompson isn’t sure how many of his family members are holding up.

Thompson’s mother, grandmother and a number of aunts and cousins reside in various parts of battered New Orleans.

“I just can’t watch the news. Everything is just bad news,” Thompson said.

AP-ES-08-31-05 1942EDT


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