Houston native and U.S. Navy veteran Betty Martin spent her life utilizing her skills as an accomplished writer to paint a portrait of the lives of others. In the course of her decades-long career — which included working as a Navy journalist during the Vietnam War, and as a staff writer at the Houston Chronicle (where I met her) — Betty worked diligently to uncover and report on injustices and to shine a light into the dark corners of society so that others could find their way out of the shadows.
On Aug. 25, Betty became part of the biggest weather story in U.S. history when Tropical Storm Harvey dumped more than 50 inches of rain on Houston. Everything for which Betty had worked so hard was swept away when the slow-moving, deadly storm destroyed her home.
It was a devastating blow — one of tens of thousands in a city underwater, gasping for breath.
What Harvey couldn’t steal from Betty, an unscrupulous opportunist did.
On Sept. 15, while Betty surveyed what remained of her home — with a FEMA representative at her side — someone snatched her purse, which contained her passport, iPhone and wallet.
“I was looking at former family antiques when a 550-year-old Japanese tansu bought in Japan in mid-1970s tipped forward and badly scratched me," Betty posted on her Facebook page. "Friend was putting anti-bacterial stuff on my wounds when one of the demolition crew's workers stole my purse from the other side of one of the mountains of rubble in front of all the units.”
Betty didn’t deserve this. No one deserves this.
Anyone who would steal the last crumbs of normalcy from a person who had just lost everything is beyond contempt.
This fundraiser is about more than raising money for Betty, so she can replace the items stolen from her. This fundraiser is a way to let Betty know that kindness and decency prevail.
Donate $1. Donate $5. Donate whatever amount you can.
Let’s do what we can to show Betty that her story is far from over — and it can still have a happy ending.
- Melissa Axelrod
- Claudia Kolker
- Mireya Novo
- Judy Van Cleve
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