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Gillette relief convoy leaves on Texas trip

Sep 6, 2017 From wire reports

GILLETTE (AP) -- Jayde West had no idea she would burst into tears last Thursday when she decided to walk over to the donation drive in the Walmart parking lot.

The connection starts with Stacy Imus, president of the Gillette Rotary Club.

Sara Martin, West's sister, cuts Imus's hair.

The two got to talking when Martin told Imus that the girls' mother, Lori Cesar, lives in Rockport, Texas, a port town on the Arkansas Bay on the Gulf of Mexico.

Rockport was one of the first towns hit by Harvey.

When it started, Rockport was warned to brace for a tropical storm. Then it changed to a Category 1 hurricane. Two days later, West said, the whole town of about 8,000 was evacuating immediately.

Cesar was born and raised in Gillette, but moved to Rockport about 10 years ago. West said she kept up with her mother as much as she could during the storm.

West said that it took her mother, her husband and her mother-in-law four hours to travel 60 miles during the evacuation.

"I talked to her after she had left and she said she couldn't remember if she packed any of our pictures or anything like that," West said. "All she remembers is packing, but not what she packed."

Cesar will have to live in an RV park for at least a month before they can move back into their home.

These are the people Keegan O'Brien, owner of FireTech and Rotary Club member wants to help. She decided about a week ago to host a donation drop-off and drive to Texas to deliver the donations.

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2017-09-24