National News

Van Buren Duo Helps With Hurricane Harvey Relief

Posted September 4

— Thousands continue to travel to Texas to help with Hurricane Harvey relief, including a pair from right here in our area.

Wesley and Nash and Trey Tounzen packed up their stuff along with a boat to help with the relief.

"As soon as I heard that he wanted to go to Houston, we just loaded up and headed out," Wesley Nash said. "It was very surreal. When we got there, you couldn't tell where the ocean began and land was supposed to end."

From the roar of countless boat motors to helicopters flying overhead and sirens going off at nearly every building, the two men said the area sounded like a war zone.

"Just helpless, helpless people," Trey Tounzen said. "You look at them and you think that could be my mom, my grandma. That could be me."

The duo said they saw things they never imagined, but one thing stood out the most.

"The thing that hit us most was we were one of the first boats to enter into a nursing home that still had about 120 patients still in it and that was something you never really expect to see," Nash said. "That really really hit us hard."

Those patients all asking one question.

"When are we gonna get out of here," Tounzen said. "How are they going to get us out of here?"

But, the two don't consider their help a big deal. They said it was an act that needed to be done.

"It was humbling and astonishing to see so many people come from all over where everybody was willing to drop what they were doing to help our neighbors in need," Nash said. "It really truly made you feel great to be a part of this country and community to see everyone pull together like that."

The two men were given more than a dozen life jackets to take on the trip with them, which they handed out during the evacuations. 50 gallons of gasoline was also donated to them to help with travel.

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