SAN ANTONIO — Three generations of Bacon women fled to San Antonio ahead of Hurricane Harvey and now wondered when, or even if, they will get to go home.
The Bacon family, made up of mom Liana, 48, her daughter Lizette, 23, and her three-year-old granddaughter got on buses headed out of Corpus Christi around 7 p.m. Thursday night and arrived at a shelter on San Antonio’s Southside around 4 a.m. Friday. They left behind family, friends and their home—located just three blocks from the beach.
San Antonio officials reported nearly 700 evacuees from the Texas coast were staying in area shelters on Friday, bringing more than 70 pets along with them. Volunteers with The American Red Cross are staffing the shelters.
The Bacon family described the shelter as roomy and “OK,” but they wish there was healthier food available for the kids.
“They’re giving them hot Cheetos and candy,” Liana said. “If the kids don’t like it, they’re going to go without eating.”
Almost as if on cue, the toddler cried out, “I want to go home.”
Joe Arrington, a spokesman for the San Antonio Fire Department, said the evacuees were being fed three meals per day plus snacks and water.
“We understand conditions are not ideal, but ask that the shelter residents be patient with us and understand that we are doing the absolute best we can to meet their immediate needs,” Arrington said.
Displaced Corpus Christi residents Patty Briones and Esmeralda Ramirez were less than thrilled with the shelter’s accommodations. Media were not allowed on the property, but the women said the room is lined with foldable cots that they keep falling out of.
Briones works at a car wash and Ramirez, her girlfriend, works at a hotel. They worry both properties may be destroyed by the storm, leaving them not only temporarily homeless, but jobless as well. They said they don’t have friends or family in the San Antonio area, nor the resources to travel elsewhere.
They feel trapped at the evacuation shelter, and question why they were brought to San Antonio, which is facing its own threats from Hurricane Harvey, including potentially life-threatening flooding.
Briones said she has lived in Corpus Christi for 25 years and has never evacuated for a hurricane before. She and Ramirez left their first floor apartment, located about two miles from the beach, late Thursday night.
“A lot of friends stayed,” Briones said. “Like a friend of mine who’s a veteran is going to ride it out and that’s not going to be good. And I left a dog and a cat over there, that’s what scares me.”
– Brittney Martin