Local Hurricane Harvey volunteers share photos, experience

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The son of a Graphic Wood Technologies employee is pauses to take a break hauling a trash bag containing debris from the house to the curb for collection in Port Aransas on Monday. The GWT team helped a family of seven whose permanent, full-time home suffered damage.

An account of their volunteering:

The CEO and staff of Spooner business Graphic Wood Technologies volunteered helping vicitm’s of Hurricane Harvey in Port Aransas, Texas, Monday, Sept. 4.

The team flew into Austin, Texas and met in Brenham where they determined their course of action and gathered tools, supplies and transportation. They arrived in Port Aransas at around 5:30 a.m. Monday, Sept. 4. They were stopped by local and state police who were enforcing a nighttime curfew but the officers were courteous and friendly.

“I don’t think there is much looting going on there,” said Mike Beggs, CEO GWT. The GWT team was one of the first cars let in and arrived at the family’s house around 7:15 a.m. They began helping remove water damaged Sheetrock and insulation, sort belongings, pack boxes, load vehicles, scrape mud, haul debris away and distribute supplies.

Local businesses were cooking and distributing free food to volunteers so they didn’t have to eat the prepackaged food we brought with them, which they ended up donating. The GWT team stayed until 6 p.m. that day and flew back the next. They returned to Spooner on Tuesday, Sept. 5, and the entire crew was wiped from their efforts. -submitted


A boat lies in one of main intersections as you enter Port Aransas, presumably picked up and left there by the flood waters.
Debris removed from homes are placed along the roadside for removal by local authorities.
A family’s salvageable belongings laid out on a tarp. They are one of many who lost a lot of mementos to include photos, journals and their children’s artwork.
A volunteer races to remove the Sheetrock from the ceiling and walls of a home to prevent mold. Once mold spreads insurance companies can call it secondary damage and not cover the mold damage.
Employees of Graphic Wood Technologies in Spooner donated blood to the Red Cross after Hurricane Harvey displaced millions from their homes. Pictured L to R; Samantha Zeien, Allison Spexet, Luke Thompson and Brandon Smith.
These three employees also donated their blood. Pictured L to R; Dylan Peterson, Jamie Trudell and AJ Mussfeldt.
Debris removed from homes are placed along the roadside for removal by local authorities.