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Ike evacuees cling to hope

For those that had to leave home to avoid Hurricane Ike, wondering what is left of your home and belongings is almost as bad as actually having to leave.
A group of IOOF Rebekah Lodge ladies from Galveston and Houston know all about waiting and wondering. They have been staying at the IOOF Retirement Center since Sept. 12 and still have not ventured home to see what Ike has left for them.
“We live about two blocks off of the sea wall in Galveston but we are still optimistic,” said Dorothy B. Dare. “We plan to travel to Galveston on Friday and see how bad things are.”
Dare, who lives with her mother Dorothy F. Dare and their friend Betty Jean Spitler packed up her family (including a dog and a cat) and what essentials they thought they would need and headed for Ennis when the city of Galveston announced mandatory evacuations. Luckily, the ladies are very active in the Rebekah order and knew that the retirement center could take them in when they needed it most.
“My mother brought me up to believe that you help others when you can and that is exactly what our order does,” Dare said. “This time though it is a little emotional to be the one needing help but we are so thankful for all of our friends that we can count on.”
The group has been helped financially from members of the IOOF Lodge in Ennis and will be provided for when they return home and their immediate needs are known.
Dare’s mother Dorothy F. says that she has always known that her IOOF family could be counted on for anything and she is grateful for the reassurance they provide.
“It is a great thing to know that you have people that can be counted on 100 percent,” she said. “They have been there when we needed it most and I am so grateful for all their help.”
Houston resident Madilene Hutto made the trip to Ennis by herself but she is also thankful she had some where to go.
“I come to the center often for meetings and our annual pilgrimage so I knew they had the space but I am so thankful they had it ready for all of us at a moments notice,” she said. “The people here are very considerate and I couldn’t think of a better place to be.”
Hutto hopes to be able to return to Houston this week if the electricity is restored to her home. While the hurricane did not damage her home, it did push a lot of debris on her property that her son has been cleaning since the day the storm stopped. She hopes to return to her home and get back to her every day life.
Two members of the Dare group will be traveling to Galveston to evaluate the damages to their home and see how long it will be until they can return. While they know that others in their area have had flooding and still have houses standing, they do not know the fate of their home.
“We are hoping for the best but whatever we find we will be ok with,” Dorothy B said. “We know that whatever happens, God will continue to provide for us and we know that we will deal with whatever we find at home.”
She has so much faith that neither she nor her mother has registered with FEMA for assistance.
“We keep being told to register with FEMA but we just feel with the support system we have with the IOOF and Rebekahs that we will be fine,” she said. “Our thought is to allow aid for families that have it worse than we do and we have not registered because of that.”
Even though the Dare’s have had to evacuate several times and this latest storm may have taken everything they own, they are still determined to stay in Galveston. Dorothy F says that no matter what happens, Galveston will always be home.
I am originally from California but when I came to Galveston, I never wanted to leave and I still don’t,” she said.
“We are not going to let a storm keep us away forever,” Dorothy B said. “Betty Jean and I were BOI (born on the island) and we just couldn’t think of walking away from it.

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Posted by on Sep 23 2008. Filed under Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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