Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Bye, Harvey

From tropical storm to class 4 hurricane, Harvey was one of the worst disasters in Texas history. No one is sorry to see Harvey move along and dissipate. Harvey formed fast, but it did not act alone. A high-pressure area to the north and west of Texas kept the storm from moving inland, as tropical storms normally do. The consistent high-pressure area lingering to the north caused Harvey to stay in the same area for a long, long time, dropping rain for a good portion of its existence. Rockport and Aransas Pass took the brunt of the wind, but Houston received the most flood damage. Recovery will take years.

I felt all the government agencies worked well together. Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick, the Texas governor and lieutenant governor seemed to be well prepared to manage the crisis. President Trump, FEMA, the Department of Homeland Security and Housing and Urban Development were all engaged. Sylvester Turner, the mayor of Houston took some flak for not ordering an evacuation, but people complaining do not understand the issues he had to face. Houston is big. Way bigger than any other city in land area. Evacuating the whole city was not a possibility and determining who to evacuate was equally impossible. Turner stayed engaged and helped coordinate disaster relief. Who could ask for more? There is nothing smooth in handling disasters. Leadership staying engaged and coordinating is the best you can ever hope to get. I saw that happening.

The governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards was also engaged and helping with relief efforts. Texas and Louisiana both called the National Guard into service. The Department of Defense is mobilizing other National Guard units to assist in the rescue and clean-up efforts.

Kathi and I are in Utah, far away from the storm, but I am a proud Texan. People helped one another. Family members took care of their extended families, then looked elsewhere to provide more assistance. Some of the volunteers had their own homes under water and were still out helping others. Some were gathering donations to provide warmth and food to evacuees. Other volunteers, including the Coast Guard and Cajun Navy were out in boats rescuing stranded people.

With all the commotion in Texas it is easy to overlook the problems people were having elsewhere. We had friends in Florida that had flooded houses and cars. Hurricanes and tropical storms are a big deal.

There were some looters and a few burglaries, but these incidents were few and the compassion of the Texas people much overshadow these lawless creeps.

The rain is slowing and some sunshine is returning. Recovery will take years. Some of our friends and neighbors lost everything. State and federal help is available. Insurance money will come in slowly, but it will come. Mostly people will have to help themselves and get some help from their friends and families. That is how we always recover. The help is always there. That is why we will always recover. What a country and what great people.


  1. Thanks for the blog entry, Nice words. I kept up with my friends ahd family in the Houston area, mostly through Facebook and text. I read about so many people helping each other, checking on each other and opening their homes to each other. I am a proud Texan too.

  2. Thanks for reading and making a comment, AJ.