See the Incredible Heroes Who Brought Help to Houston

Hurricane Harvey, now Tropical Storm Harvey, may be receding from Texas, but thousands of people remain homeless. In addition, the estimated cost of repairs stands at $190 billion, and the storm dropped the highest rainfall ever recorded in the continental U.S.

Yet amidst this overwhelming tragedy, we can take hope from the inspiring stories of people stepping up to help their neighbors, just because it was the right thing to do.

El-Bolillo-Bakery

Photo Credit: Facebook

1.  Kitchen manager cooks up a recipe for compassion

Jorge Agundis was at work at Houston’s El Bolillo Bakery on the overnight shift as the rain began to fall. He was concerned about his wife and three young children, but as the rain continued there was nothing he could do to help them. He was trapped, along with his colleagues and 4,000 pounds of floor. So they decided to bake and continued for 48 hours. Store owner Kirk Michaelis arrived Monday morning: “I was amazed,” he said. “All the racks were full of bread, just stacked to the ceiling.” With that bread they’ve helped feed those in need.

mattress-mack

Photo Credit: Screenshot from WFMY online video

2.  Houston businessman turns his stores into shelters

When Harvey hit, Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale got busy turning two of his furniture stores into shelters. First he sent out several of his large trucks to rescue people. “We had several Penske rental trucks, 24-foot trucks that get you in any flooded street. We sent our volunteers out in Houston picking up people,” McIngvale said. Now this generous man has 400 people at his stores, where he is also feeding them.

spiderman

Photo Credit: Screenshot from Buzzfeed video

3. Spiderman!

The George R. Brown convention center in Houston is providing shelter to several thousand people displaced by Hurricane Harvey. How do you entertain children in the midst of this catastrophic event? Enter Spiderman: an unidentified person dressed as Spiderman has been busy entertaining the kids.

rescued-truck-driver

Photo Credit: Screenshot from YouTube video

4. A reporter turns hero

CBS affiliate KHOU-TV reporter Brandi Smith was standing on a bridge by the Sam Houston Tollway when she noticed a semi truck stuck in rising floodwaters on the road below, with the driver trapped inside. A few minutes later, by chance, a crew of Harris County sheriff’s deputies drove by, towing an airboat. The quick-thinking Smith flagged them down, told them about the truck driver and just in time, they were able to rescue him.

citizen-rescue

Photo Credit: Screenshot from San Diego Union Tribune

5. A man with a boat just started saving people

It’s hard not to be moved by this man. He arrived in Houston with his boat and when asked what he was going to do, he replied, “I’m going to try to save some lives.” What a beautiful soul! The man’s name is still not known.

Rockport-hero

Photo Credit: Screenshot from San Diego Union Tribune

6. Sometimes it’s the small things that make a big impact

Lockport, Texas, took a direct hit when Hurricane Harvey came ashore on August 25, bring death and destruction. But there were also signs of hope and promise. 

Matthew Otero, seen here, kept his donut shop open in spite of major damage to his building. He and his family members kept making donuts and providing coffee, holding the neighborhood together.

Florida-fish-and-wildlife

Photo Credit: Florida Fish and Wildlife

7. First responders show what bravery is

And of course numerous first responders have been saving lives every day.

There have been countless stories revealing the generosity with which Americans in Texas are treating their human neighbors. But plenty of animals have also been in need of rescue.

cat-rescue

Photo Credit: Screenshot from Independent video

8. People were there to help animals too

Austin Pets Alive! had taken in more than 600 pets from areas affected by Hurricane Harvey by August 30. That number was expected to grow to 1,000 by September 1, most of the pets from shelters along the coast. “Most of the animals we have in were previously in a shelter so they were already in need of homes,” said Lindsay Picard, Austin Pets Alive! marketing manager.

Rescued-dog

Photo Credit: Screenshot from Buzzfeed video

9.  Have-a-go heroes rescue dog from deadly waters

In a story of heroism repeated numerous times, a group of people in Lumberton, Texas, got together spontaneously to rescue this dog, who was floundering in deep, swift water, and likely to drown if help had not shown up.

Veterans

Photo Credit: Screenshot from Buzzfeed video

10. Veterans to the rescue

This veterans group has been busy rescuing people and animals. Buck Buchanan, a former U.S. Marine, jumped into action when he saw Hurricane Harvey, and then Tropical Storm Harvey, slam into Houston. By last Wednesday, Buchanan had got together more than 200 people, mostly veterans from U.S. services. They crossed Houston in boats and trucks, pulling people and animals to safety. They are one of the many groups that have emerged this week, undoubtedly saving numerous lives.

If you’re awed by these incredible stories, why not consider how you might honor these heroes and create a Care2 petition? You can follow the example of the Care2 member who created a petition to ask that a statue of Heather Heyer be set up in the wake of Charlottesville.

Take a look at these guidelines and you’ll find it’s easy to get started, and soon the Care2 community will be signing up to support you.

 

Photo Credit: The National Guard.

56 comments

Marija M
Marija Mabout a month ago

Some people have big heart...respect.

SEND
Mike R
Mike Rabout a month ago

Thanks

SEND
Mike R
Mike Rabout a month ago

Thanks

SEND
Angela K
Angela Kabout a month ago

That people have been saved is common, but I am glad to see that the animals do not get left behind. My special THANKS to this HEROES !!!

SEND
Kathryn I
Kathryn Iabout a month ago

There's a special place in Heaven for these wonderful selfless people. Thank you!

SEND
Cindy M. D
Cindy M. Dabout a month ago

Bless you all - you have my deepest respect and gratitude. Praying for the same help for Irma victims.

SEND
Colin Clauscen
Colin Cabout a month ago

These heroes of Hurricane Harvey should be honored somehow

SEND
Kay M
Kay Mabout a month ago

do not know why my post was cut off but here is the ending - I PRAY THAT THE CITIZENS UNDER GOING IRMA -WILL have the same great heroes and angels- then you have HURRICANE JOSE - coming right behind IRMA - so sad and scary sincerely KAY M.

SEND
Kay M
Kay Mabout a month ago

Good evening and thank you - for this article - POSITIVELY- WE NEED TO ACKNOWLEDGE AND THANK THESE GREAT HEROES AND ANGELS OF MERCY- I pray that

SEND
Naomi D
Naomi Dreyerabout a month ago

What a wonderful article. People can be and are good and helpful. Too bad it seems to only show when there is a disaster.

SEND