Jim and Lisa, with their three teenage children, traveled several hours north to New Braunfels, and then to the Dallas Fort Worth area, to stay with family members until it was safe to go back. During this time, Harvey strengthened into a Category 4 storm, with the 130 mph winds pushing a storm surge ahead of it.
A couple days after Harvey made landfall, when Jim was able to return to Port Aransas to assess the situation, he found that the family home had sustained a significant amount of water and wind damage. The shingles on the roof were mostly gone, water had come in through the soffits in the eves, soaking insulation and interior ceilings causing some to give way. The windows of the home were almost all blown out as well, and the sideways rain during the peak of the storm managed to soak a lot of what the family owned. Estimates are that up to 6ft of water had come through this area. Although the main house was built on stilts, the garage/laundry area on the bottom floor of the house was flooded by the storm surge, and the appliances, motorcycle and minivan left there were a complete loss. Full insurance assessments have not yet been completed, but we believe the home will have to be gutted down to the studs on one complete side of the main floor and completely redone downstairs.
It will take months and maybe even years for the town of Port Aransas to recover and get back to some state of normalcy. Emergency service crews are working to get streets cleared and most of the utilities back up and running, so that residents may return, but Jim and Lisa will likely be out of work for some time. Lisa and the kids will be temporarily staying in an apartment in Corpus Christi so that they can attend school in Flour Bluff until Port Aransas schools re-open. Jim is working at their home sun up to sun down, to clean up the mess and repair damage as quickly as he can, so that they may all return home.
After everything has dried out and the roof has been repaired, Jim will begin on the interior of the home. Some things that will have to be replaced are the washer and dryer, living room furniture, all mattresses, bed frames and bedding for the three kids, and at least one vehicle.
The Shelton's family is spread all over Texas and beyond, and we are doing our best to help them in person and from afar. Those that are close enough have been and will continue to assist Jim and Lisa with the clean up and rebuilding process, which could take weeks. And those of us that can't be there are hoping to help with donations, words of encouragement and moral support.
If you are able to contribute funds to their recovery from Harvey, all of the money you give will all go directly to them (other than the 5% fee to gofundme).
We appreciate any contribution, big or small, and hope you will continue to keep them and all others affected by this storm in your thoughts and prayers!
Thank you for taking the time to read their story.
(Daughter of Sally Shelton Rush and niece to Jim and Lisa Shelton)