As we tell Mrs. Gabriel’s story, we also invite you to take a moment of gratitude and memory for Mr. Delas Gabriel, who passed away at the beginning of 2019.
Mrs. Kathy Gabriel and three generations of her family have lived in Kashmere Gardens for nearly 70 years. They are far too familiar with Houston’s floods. Mrs. Gabriel’s husband Delas often did the work of repairing the home, but illness made that work increasingly difficult. When Hurricane Harvey hit, her home dangerously flooded. With her husband’s illness coming just afterwards, her home became a place of more stress than comfort. “I watched my husband suffer in there so much,” she explained. “Every time I walked in, it was like boom. The hardest part was going back [to the old house].”
Mrs. Gabriel doesn’t have to experience that pain any longer. Through the Harvey Homeowner Assistance Program, she was provided with a new house, which will help her feel secure and comfortable. Resiliency, energy-efficiency, and age-in-place features are added to all the homes built through the Harvey Homeowner Assistance Program, to ensure that homes are built to last.
On the day she moved in, Mrs. Gabriel and her family members stood on the elevated porch watching furniture arrive in the middle of another rainstorm. But instead of worrying about the rain, the family was focused on other things: like how to arrange her furniture and who will host Thanksgiving. It was a bright and warm morning despite the rain, thanks to family and friends filling her house with well-wishes.
Mrs. Gabriel wrote to her housing specialist just before the home was completed, thanking the City for the work being done. “I can actually love coming home and not worry about getting sick and hate being there,” she wrote. “This home give [sic] me purpose and more meaning…I’m Happy and I feel Blessed.”
Recovery stories like Mrs. Gabriel’s are happening daily, and help is still available. The first step to getting recovery help is to complete the Harvey Recovery Survey. All other questions can be directed to our call center at 832-393-0550.
. All other questions can be directed to our call center at 832-393-0550.