2019 April Texas Disaster Response Recovery Team, Day 7

This was a travel day for the team.  All have arrived home safely as this blog is being prepared.  We are grateful that our trip was without injury or illness to any team member. 

We are sharing an interview with the homeowner conducted late on Thursday as she sat in her kitchen which she noted “…now has walls…”, replacing the bare wooden studs that has been her view for the past 18 months.

Q: How long you have lived in this home? 

A: I have lived in this house for 26 years.  My granddaughter, Heidi, is my sole caretaker and we celebrated her first birthday in this kitchen just after moving into the home.  That is how I can remember the date. 

Q: We are in Aransas Pass now.  Are you from this area?  How long have you lived in the area?

A: I was born in Houston and lived my childhood in Texas except four years when my parents and I lived in Louisiana, I have no siblings.  My parents were great people.  My husband and I moved here from Ingleside, a nearby town, a number of years ago.  We liked the schools here and knew it was a great community.  So, added together, I have lived in the area about 40 years.

Q: Did you evacuate during Hurricane Harvey?

A: Yes, we were placed under mandatory evacuation.  My granddaughter and her boyfriend took me with them to Falfurrias, about 140 miles away. We stayed there about five days.  I left to go to Sequin when I found that FEMA had a hotel there to help persons who had pets.  I stayed there about 30 days.  I returned home and all the damage hit me in the face. As I drove down the street it was piled so high with furniture, debris, trees, and limbs. 

Q: Tell us about what damage you received at this house. 

A: We did not receive any flooding as you would know flooding.  Damage was mostly along the back portion of the house, this kitchen, a bathroom, and a back bedroom.  The way a hurricane circulates the back side of the house was hit with the strongest wind. The wind tore away a wind turbine on the roof and with it a portion of the roof.  This allowed rain to enter this portion of the home soaking the ceiling, walls, and floors ruining the appliances such as the refrigerator, stove, microwave and bedroom furniture.  The wind and flying debris damaged the windows and siding, especially the back of the house.  The front portion of the house was not damaged and is where we have lived since the storm.  We did have the roof replaced and some soffit repaired after we moved back and this enabled us to curtail further damage and make the home livable.

Q: Do you have any closing comments? A: To say I am grateful is so little to say for all the good people have given up to help me.  I have been a Methodist most of my adult life and did not know this program of help from Methodist churches was available until now.  Our Bible says what you do to the least of these, you have done for me. So what you have done is make repairs to God’s house.  It was all done out of love.  I have been very impressed with how well you have worked together to accomplish so much.  I wish my health was better so I could take part in something like this on behalf of our Lord and His love for all of us.  I must add that all of the teams that have helped me have been so gracious and professional.  I am really grateful.

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