Veterans at Sea get its boots on the ground in Texas

Unidentified volunteers with the Grunt Style team help clean debris from a damaged home in Woodsboro, Texas.

Unidentified volunteers with the Grunt Style team help clean debris from a damaged home in Woodsboro, Texas.

KINGMAN – Members of the local non-profit Veterans at Sea are on site in Texas to help with relief efforts following Hurricane Harvey.

CEO Charles Black arrived in Woodsboro, Texas, about 40 miles north of Corpus Christi, Sept. 7 and immediately teamed up with rescue operations supported by Grunt Style, a U.S. veteran-run clothing company. Veterans at Sea Chief Operations Officer Brian Kelly left for Texas on Monday with additional donations and arrived Tuesday shortly after noon Arizona time. Due to spotty cellphone service, Black has been communicating with the Daily Miner via text.

“Since I have been on ground, I have to say Grunt Style has done an amazing job providing support to not only the town but also the surrounding communities,” Black said.

He left Kingman Sept. 6 and arrived in Texas 23 hours later, offloaded the Kingman donations from his Ford F 1-150 pick-up truck and 6-foot by 12-foot U-Haul trailer and took a brief rest before getting to work.

“The following day I was tasked with driving volunteers from Connecticut to help clear downed trees from an elderly woman’s yard,” Black said.

He assisted a volunteer veterinarian office in Rockport, Texas. The Grunt Style rescue team had rescued a dog and took it in for needed medical attention to the only operating animal shelter. Black said Rockport was one of the towns hit the hardest by Hurricane Harvey.

“Most of the town was destroyed,” he said. “The local airport was covered in FEMA teams along with electric companies camping on the airfield.”

He’s since been working out of the Woodsboro Family Center unloading supplies as they come in and assisting people looking for simple household items and food just to get by.

“It’s easy to look at the destruction around you, but to listen to the personal stories of losing their homes and all their belongings is hard,” Black said. “Some of the most heartbreaking stories are the ones with the details of not only losing their homes, but the nightmare of riding out the hurricane through the night with no power and no idea if they would live through the night.”

Black took about 120 pounds of halibut he caught in Alaska, cooked (courtesy of a grill provided by the Mayor of Woodsboro) and served residents and first responders.

“It was an honor to serve the residents as they came by for a hot meal,” he said.

Black plans to return toward the end of September.

“I’m proud to have volunteered my time with the Grunt Style team and look forward to the rest of my team’s arrival to continue helping this mission to help a community rebuild,” Black said.

For more info on Veterans at Sea, go to www.veteransatsea.org. The organization will be building a full volunteer Disaster Response Team. If you’re interested you can email us at info@veteransatsea.org.

F 1-150 pick-up truck and 6-foot by 12-foot U-Haul trailer and took a brief rest before getting to work.

“The following day I was tasked with driving volunteers from Connecticut to help clear downed trees from an elderly woman’s yard,” Black said.

He assisted a volunteer veterinarian office in Rockport, Texas. The Grunt Style rescue team had rescued a dog and took it in for needed medical attention to the only operating animal shelter. Black said Rockport was one of the towns hit the hardest by Hurricane Harvey.

“Most of the town was destroyed,” he said. “The local airport was covered in FEMA teams along with electric companies camping on the airfield.”

He’s since been working out of the Woodsboro Family Center unloading supplies as they come in and assisting people looking for simple household items and food just to get by.

“It’s easy to look at the destruction around you, but to listen to the personal stories of losing their homes and all their belongings is hard,” Black said. “Some of the most heartbreaking stories are the ones with the details of not only losing their homes, but the nightmare of riding out the hurricane through the night with no power and no idea if they would live through the night.”

Black took about 120 pounds of halibut he caught in Alaska, cooked (courtesy of a grill provided by the mayor of Woodsboro) and served residents and first responders.

“It was an honor to serve the residents as they came by for a hot meal,” he said.

Black plans to return toward the end of September.

“I’m proud to have volunteered my time with the Grunt Style team and look forward to the rest of my team’s arrival to continue helping this mission to help a community rebuild,” Black said.

For more info on Veterans at Sea, go to www.veteransatsea.org. The organization will be building a full volunteer Disaster Response Team. If you’re interested you can email us at info@veteransatsea.org.