Monday, September 26

Re Reb Tex from Bayou_King

Great news that you all must have received, but for those who read here:

Folks, just back from RebTex's place at 3 a.m. and have excellent news! Early reports that his home was destroyed were not accurate. There is enough water damage that he will likely ask FEMA to replace it..... but they still have their possessions & do not have to start over!The family spent a harrowing night in Reb's workshop, as multiple tornadoes howled "like banshees" around them. They could hear them moving up the road with a growling sound and trees snapping like matchsticks. They actually saw the roof lifting up and down.... his son said at one point the whole roof was moving in a wave. Many bolts in the workshop structure are snapped off, but it held.... In the A.M. a tornado felled a large oak which utterly crushed a John Deere riding lawnmower... but fell AWAY from the workshop. A branch ripped open the front of the workshop, but they were able to brace it with 2x4s.Reb's wife had said goodbye to their animals, expecting them not to survive. Walking around the property is simply amazing. Every tree that fell barely missed crushing the animals and people. Goats, pigs, dogs, cats, horses, chickens, roosters, people, all are OK! They were so blessed.We hooked up the generator, offloaded the impossible-to-find gasoline, ran the cables, and they are in their home tonight, with A/C, refrigeration, lights, and a donated microwave. Then a huge snake got in with the chickens and all the dogs went crazy as RebTex went in the coop and wrestled it out by hand as the Chihuahuas ran up to nip at it. Dogs howling, chickens going berzerk, Reb grabbing that snake by the head and dispatching it, then we had some great spaghetti his wife had cooked in their makeshift outdoor kitchen tent!Their place had enough roof damage that tons of water got in and now the floors are badly damaged and structurally unsound. The place is basically totaled, but they are able to live in it for now... until it rains again.All the people there are in the same boat... no power, no ice, no gas, but surviving in that tough Texan way. FEMA so far has given them a gallon or two or water, one bag of ice, then split.Again..... RebTex and family are doing better than first thought, and thankful to be alive after a night with the tornados!Also, he is feeling better as he continues to recover from his appendectomy. Still has pain (had to order him to quit lifting supplies) but looks much better and insists they pumped enough IV bags of ampicillin into him that they killed the infection.RebTex and family send their deepest gratitude to all of you

UPDATE: by Mafia Princess
Spoke with RebTex this morning. The floor of the trailor has given way under the weight of the water and from the saturation of the water eroding and eating away the flooring of the trailor. They will be in "camp" mode living in the work shop building short term. It is a 25'x25' building. They have a portable wood-burning fireplace they use for heat in the winter so they'll be fine for now. They have all their clothes drying on a line. The new beds they purchased recently are fine as they were still in the plastic covers they came in. The upholsterd furniture is questionable, but all the wood stuff is out in the sun drying. The computers and electronics are in the work shed. They have artesian water on their property, and a septic system. They are too far out for natural gas, but use a portable fireplace for heat in the winter. Electricity will be off for at least a month. He's keeping his teenaged sons busy, but he's wearing out his finger pointing at what needs to be done.

He said the fire department showed up to tell him "this fella is in town looking for you. He has a truckload of supplies and says he knows you from the Internet." Reb says Mrs RebTex's eyes started to twinkle and mist up. They were so moved that they had not been forgotten and didn't know what to say, but a heart-felt and deep Thank You.

He said the three vehicles have full gas tanks now thanks to Bayou_king, and if they conserve, they can keep the freezer running/cold for about a month. In typical RebTex fashion, he said now that they've got that generator, he can get the freezer working and help out his elderly neighbors. The wife is a diabetic, so he's going be keeping her insulin cool in their freezer. They think they can make it for the month on the supplies Bayou_King delivered. He did promise to tell me if they need anything.

Okay, now for the news on a new home/trailor. Reb knows the local FEMA director and did some horse trading with him for FEMA support for the unofficial Katrina camp they setup. Apparently, there are about 20 trailor home stored at the Newton fairgrounds. The folks in La. were too proud to accept the trailors so they were housed in Newton. He's off today to find this fella and do a bit of horse trading for one of those trailor homes. He's all set up to receive it and put it to immediate use. If he can't locate the guy, we can help by making some calls and locating the correct place within FEMA to make the requests. If we can divide and conquor to get him the numbers or places he needs to contact, I can get the info to him when he calls either later today, or tomorrow. We can best help him by making calls and getting the information he needs to move through the redtape at FEMA. He's promised to keep in touch for the next few days until they are situated.

So minions. We can still help by sending money to Bayou_king's hurricane paypal account, but we can also help by making calls and contacts. Who's got time today to make a few calls?

I saw the info re the neighbor's diabetes, and as a diabetic on insulin, and retired RN, I wanted to add the site from the Government re the care of insulin during the emergencies brought on by Katrina and Rita, if you have any diabetic family members and/or friends in the affected areas.

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