Our Time in Houston Like many residents of New Orleans, my family and I spent Hurricane Katrina in Houston, Texas. After enduring a seemingly endless trek to Texas and helplessly viewing the destruction of our wonderful city on the news once we got there, it was hard for anyone affected by the storm to feel anything but total despair. But the people of Houston really went a long way towards making us feel welcome and helping us in more ways than we ever expected. After settling in during the first month after the storm, The employees at my mother's job in Houston provided both catered and home-cooked meals for all of the families of the storm's victims, and they donated clothes for several weeks.The employees of The State of Texas and the Red Cross were extremely prompt in helping us obtain food stamps to help with the cost of groceries. And they were also helpful in directing us to other services that were offered free of charge, or at a reduced cost. One such service was a private practice medical clinic that offered free medical care and prescription medication. My whole family visited the clinic about three times and received excellent care. But beyond those experiences, Houstonians were always very kind to us. And when they learned that we were in their city due to Katrina they were even more unrestrained in their kindness. Perhaps the most dramatic example of this generosity that I can recall occurred when we were shopping for some necessities a few days after arriving in Houston, just after the storm hit; from a distance I was watching my mom as she waited to be rung up. I heard the cheerful cashier loudly ask for her drivers license, but after she looked at it, she grew silent and somber. Her bubbly personality was gone and the next thing I knew she had her hand on my mom's shoulder, and by the time I got up to the register to get a closer look they were both practically on the verge of tears! After offering some heartfelt words of sympathy and comfort, she gave us her cell number and urged us to call her if we needed anything. The fact that a complete stranger would offer assistance like that was astonishing to me at the time, but when I think about that time that's what I remember the most. Those kind gestures from all those wonderful people made it possible for us to endure that life-altering debacle we call Hurricane Katrina.


“[Untitled],” Hurricane Digital Memory Bank, accessed July 20, 2024, https://hurricanearchive.org/items/show/45276.