As a child in Comanche, Texas, the first hint of snow had my sister and I praying for no school. The moment we saw our school scroll across the bottom of the TV screen we were as happy as Christmas morning. The day was filled with snow ice cream, snowmen, snowball fights and hitching rides on the back of makeshift sleds pulled by trucks.
I certainly never remembered a snowstorm turning into a statewide catastrophe with no electricity, no water and single-digit-degree weather. Last week during the storm my heart was so heavy. I felt helpless because so many needed help. I know others, including city leaders, felt the same way. From my viewpoint, I saw a whole lot of people in public and private trying to figure out, the best they could, to make the situation better, not just for them, but for their neighbors and community. So many stories locally of sweetness and goodness, even bravery. First Baptist Church, Poteet opened their church for a week allowing anyone to spend the night. The Poteet PD gave rides to the church, so people were not on the icy streets. The Backyard Restaurant in Poteet fed 1,000 people for free. Friends and Family Hair Salon, Pleasanton offered a free wash with shampoo and conditioner on Friday for folks who had been out of water. The Quilted Hearts handed out 200 quilts to people to stay warm. Joe’s Place, Jourdanton provided free soup to anyone who needed it. Pleasanton ISD and Pleasanton Emergency Management Office helped deliver water to nursing homes. A woman called the Poteet Police Department for water and a few minutes later an ASCO deputy brought some by. The City of Pleasanton and the Pleasanton Emergency Operations Center held an impromptu food distribution on Sunday with the help of Pleasanton ISD and handed out 220 food boxes, gallons of water and milk. Dozens of volunteers turned up Monday morning to help hand out some 507 boxes of food to carloads at the Poteet Strawberry Festival Grounds. Café Chris’s owner, Erica Lopez, and her partner Lacie Harrington opened up their home to people who needed a place to stay or take a shower. Lacie Harrington drove food boxes over to the elderly in Poteet.
The Pleasanton Express will be sharing “Doing Good” stories that came out of a very bad storm in the upcoming weeks. Please send us your stories of acts of kindness that you saw big or small to firstname.lastname@example.org. “Look for the helpers in times of trouble. There will always be helpers,” Fred Roger’s mother.
NOEL WILKERSON HOLMES is the Publisher and Managing Editor of the Pleasanton Express. You may reach her at email@example.com.