Like tens of thousands of others in the path of Hurricane Harvey, Kimberlie Dando, found herself in a helpless position making the tough decision with her husband to flee their flooded home with her two small children.
Her husband grabbed their Autistic 3-year-old Paxton, she grabbed her 15-month-old son Nixon and made a run for their lives.
“It was hard enough to keep them from drowning,” Dando said. “The current just kept taking us under, and my husband looked behind and he said ‘you have to keep going you have to keep going.’”
At one point, Dando said she slipped and fell in the fast moving current. She was carrying medicine in one hand and her 15-month-old son in the other.
“Guess which I dropped,” Dando said. “The bag.”
When the airboat appeared at the end of their driveway Dando said she had no clue who was pulling up.
She couldn’t believe the men coming to rescue her traveled more than a thousand miles away to save lives.
“And then boom as if God himself sent the FWC officers down to me,” Dando said. “If FWC wasn't there we would not be here we would not have been rescued. If he hadn't been at the end waiting for me, I don't know if I would've had it in me, I was absolutely and utterly exhausted and terrified.”
The rescues won’t be ending anytime soon. According to statistics released by the state of Florida, “Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) officers are continuing to actively assist with disaster response efforts in the Houston area. FWC officers have rescued more than 200 Texans since arriving in the area after being deployed by Governor Scott in response to Texas’ request for emergency assistance. Nearly 125 FWC officers, more than 40 boats, 17 high water vehicles, two Mobile Command Centers, and eight shallow draft vessels are currently in Texas to support ongoing search and rescue and disaster response efforts.”
“These men came from states away. They left their dry homes, their warm beds, their families their children. And, they came in freezing cold water, winds and rain and risked their lives for us. I owe my life to them. This was a heartfelt selfless act to save a human being.”
The Dando family lost everything. They have set up a PayPal account for anyone who wants to help the email address to send donations is email@example.com.