Ma & Jess live in a tiny town between Beaumont TX and Port Arthur LA . It's called Vidor.
One day they had an unwanted visitor... Hurricane Rita was determined to go right through their little town and over their home.
They fled to a friend's house 55 miles north, but at the "urgings" of their son-in-law they decided to move a few hundred miles northeast.
If they would have stayed they would have been sleeping right under where this monster oak fell.
Instead, they drove northeast a few hundred miles and were safe from Rita's direct path.
They fared well, however their home did not. Rita passed directly over their town uprooting and splitting 300 year old oak trees. One of those trees ended up on and in their home.
LandAmerica is where I work.
These are the GREAT PEOPLE
I work with!
These wonderful people took it upon themselves to raise $2,700.00 to help rebuild Jesse's and Ma's place.
The company also gave me extra PTO (Paid Time Off) to go and re-build their home!!!
Yes... it was a total loss...
So next week I am packing up Woofy with my tools and driving to Vidor Texas to help rebuild Ma's and Jesse's place!!!
Here you can see the tree as it's being cut away from the house. You can also see where the oak did not crush the home the branches pierced through the roof into the rooms.
After 4 days of being here we have hooked up gas, water, cable & sewer Ma has a working bathroom, refrigerator freezer, TV, gas stove, hot water, washer & dryer and the additional room is now on its way!
This is Tim! He is Ma's little brother. He came out from Austin for the weekend to help, and man did he! He brought a nail-gun and compressor!
I had no idea you can get blisters on your knees from screwing in flooring. . . but I got em!
This will give you an idea of what Rita did in Vidor. Here are just a few pictures that tell how powerful this storm was...
This is another house on Ma's block. No tree went through it, the walls and roof were just pulled off. There is still a baseball cap on the headboard though the bedroom wall is gone.
Rita was strong enough to rip the steel beams of the Chevron Station's island cover, pick it up and throw it across the street...
Note the new tilt on the Exxon sign on the other side of the highway.
Most business were lucky if they only lost signs. If the wind didn't get them then the flooding did. Homes that seem perfectly fine are now uninhabitable because the floods brought sewage and mold.
The house below seems fine though the chimney has been torn off. But it had to be gutted due to the mold.
Ma is not so good at taking pictures, but these are me setting up a roof-line.
Getting ready for severe thunderstorms we wet up a huge tarp over the four walls. 50 mph wind played hell on that tarp but it held.
Wrapping the house... keeps it wind and waterproof
Windows and doors go in and then on goes the siding!!!
About now I am struggling with the flu... thank you cold-eze!
No door here...
Door here now
I don't have all the siding on but I am switching to the electrical to make sure it all gets in.
Inside the room is 16' x 20' AND 10' high!
John Hulsey flys in to help me for a few days!!!
YEA!!! A BIG HELP WITH SIDING! And a BIG MORALE BOOST!
With recessed lights installed, reinforced boxes for ceiling fans, wall receptacles, switches and dimmer boxes in my work here has come to an end...
Time to pack up the tools and head back to San Diego!