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San Jacinto News Times - Local News

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'I'm just lost'


By Megan Whitworth

Misty Herrera sits on a cot at the Shepherd Community Center and organizers her items as she settles down for the day. "It's just hard; I haven't really sat down and cried," Misty said as she comforts her children, teenage daughters Selena and Emma, and her young son, Kristian. Just days ago, on Monday, Aug. 28, Misty and her mother, Alice Charlow were watching the news about updates on Hurricane Harvey in their hometown of New River. "We were seeing Houston was getting affected. We knew we were going to get affected, but we didn't know how bad," she said. "My mom and I were taking turns sleeping, keeping an eye out for water levels, and making sure everything was okay. "Before we were rescued, it was 12 inches from coming into their bedrooms," Misty continued as she pointed to her daughters. "They weren't talking about Cleveland; they weren't talking about Trinity River. So it caught us off guard." As the water kept rising, Misty's neighbor called the local volunteer fire department. That is when the family was rescued. "There was a guy who had a big truck who could get through the water. They put us on the back of the truck," Misty said. "We got on the boat; we got in the gully, and it broke down. They managed to get us where we could walk. They were kind enough to pull my mom in the boat because she's handicapped." Throughout the next four days, Misty and her children, along with her mother, Alice Charlow, were shuttled to four shelters, which the last was the Community Center. Some of the shelters provided meals and running bathrooms, but not shower facilities. Some of the shelters lost electricity. But Misty said she was grateful to now be at the shelter in Shepherd but the unknown is what scares her the most. "People are coming in and going home, but we can't," Misty said. "…I don't have any bras; I didn't get a chance to get any of that. I just feel like I'm floating on air. The first night I did get a good night's sleep. Last night, I couldn't really sleep because my kids aren't sleeping well, so I'm not sleeping well. My daughter lost her medication; I asked them if they can do an emergency refill or something like that. I'm just scared. We're scared." Charlow registered with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), but agents told the grandmother that it could be three months until they get out to her property, Misty said. "They want her to go and look at the trailer; we don't have a road," Misty said. "She can't walk. She can barely sit in a boat. And I'm like, 'How is she supposed to do that?'" Misty said that she has extended family in Beaumont that is trying to get help and find a permanent location for the family, but until then, Misty wonders what will happen to her children and mother. "We need more attention out here, our government needs to come down here and see how bad we're hit, too," she said. "Make sure we get thought about – just not the city. "My kids lost everything," Misty said. "…It's a really scary thing right now. I want to know we are OK."


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