Mattress Mack opens Gallery Furniture as shelter during winter storm

Tuesday, February 16, 2021
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Just call him the man with a plan! Mattress Mack opened two warming centers. Here's what to know.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- He came in clutch during Hurricane Harvey, and now, Jim "Mattress Mack" McIngvale is doing it again. This time, he's opening Gallery Furniture's doors to get people out of their cold homes.

Power outages that have lasted longer than 24 hours have forced people to urgently seek warmth as the region grapples with this historic winter storm.

Many have nowhere to go. As a result, Mattress Mack has opened two Gallery Furniture locations as warming centers complete with food, coffee, hot chocolate, blankets and sweatshirts.

The shelters are located at his stores at 6006 North Freeway in Houston and 7227 West Grand Parkway South in Richmond.

"The cold is bitter, so we're opening up the doors to Houstonians," Mattress Mack said, adding that there is security around-the-clock.

He did ask that people let those close to those locations try to take advantage of the shelters first, rather than have people drive across town to visit them.

Still, he said the first question he asked during this winter storm is, "What can we do to help?"

"Rather than complain about what should have been done, let's just do things that are good for the community. Get people out here. Whether they want to stay for two hours until their power gets back on, or they want to stay for two days, we're here for the community," he said.

As of 11:20 a.m. Tuesday, Mattress Mack said about 15 to 20 people were at the store at the North Freeway, but he expected more to arrive.

Houstonians will remember Mattress Mack did the same thing without hesitation in 2017, when Harvey crippled the area. According to this weather.gov report, many areas received more than 40 inches of rain in a four-day period.

Harvey had peak accumulations of over 60 inches of rain.

At that time, Mattress Mack ordered employees to pick up people stranded in their homes and cars. They were then brought to the Gallery Furniture showroom and warehouse on the North Freeway, as well as a second showroom in Richmond off the Grand Parkway.

If you're unable to make it to the shelter at Gallery Furniture, there are a number of shelters and warming stations open to help those in need. Check this list.

The video above is from this week's continuing coverage on the severe winter weather.

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