Pictured: The American Red Cross opened a shelter at William Adams Middle School. Children from a local day care center were kept entertained with games. People were forced to leave after water filled buildings. Photo by OFELIA GARCIA HUNTER
Ofelia Garcia Hunter, Alice Echo-News Journal
Thirty-five people, including 20 children from a day care center and several families, were evacuated Friday to William Adams Middle School as floodwaters forced them out of their homes, Red Cross officials said.
The families were evacuated from Fifth, Sixth, Chandler, Freer Place, Highland and Hickey streets.
"The last time it rained like this, it got up to the house, but it didn't go in," said Diana Serna, who was evacuated to a city shelter along with her son and granddaughter.
They were evacuated from the 900 block of Chandler Street.
Her son David Garza said when they got rescued by a fire truck, the water was already going inside their home.
"The water was coming up the steps and we needed to get out of there," he said. "It was about two and a half inches of water inside the house."
Rosario Watrin was also evacuated when their vehicle got swept away in the water and stalled on Chandler Street with her husband and six children.
"We were all stranded down our street," she said in the shelter. "We were trying to leave in the vehicle."
Nolan-Boyd Head Start day care center instructors said their evacuation of 20 children went smoothly on the last day of school. They said the children were having fun because they were getting wet.
"The police department rescued us because we were getting water inside the day care center," said Ester Recio, with the day care center. "We are glad it's over."
Fire officials in rescue trucks and police officers in vans were transporting people from their homes and stranded vehicles to a temporary city shelter at the recreation center on Cameron and Seventh streets.
The overflow of evacuees were than transported to William Adams Middle School where the American Red Cross Coastal Bend chapter from Corpus Christi responded to the severe flooding. A team of three disaster workers were deployed to the school with supplies in the Emergency Response Vehicle.
They joined another four members from the Alice local chapter to assist the families. The shelter at the school was opened at 11:30 p.m. and all of the 35 people were relocated with family or back to their homes by 2:30 p.m.
H-E-B donated 14 packages of bottled water and Pampers for the children, spokeswoman Rebecca Hinojosa said. Other donations were made by Wal-Mart and Whataburger, city officials said.
"This is the first time in a long time that we had to open a shelter," said Patrick Thomas, Red Cross local spokesman.