Homeless Houstonians face long night as hard freeze hits town

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Homeless Houstonians have had to make a choice tonight: seek shelter or try to survive the hard freeze overnight. (KTRK)

It's a sad sight to see on any day, but especially tonight.

The homeless in Houston are desperate to keep warm. For these folks, a donated fire pit saved the night.

"What it's about 30 something degrees? Just trying to keep warm here," one person said. "It's alright, but the fire is keeping me warm."

As the sleet started to fall, a family came to hand out food. It was a blessing in the bitter cold.

The Teague family from Montgomery County showed up with a hot, home-cooked meal.

"We have enough to feed 200, so we'll go here and wherever else we see him go down there, we just go where the need is," said Twyla Teague.

The need is great. Shelters across the city are packed. Places like The Star of Hope are at capacity.

"Last night we had 328 and that was 27 sleeping on the floor on a mat," said Scott Arthur, with The Star of Hope. "Tonight we expect properly to at least double."

Warming centers are helping out with the overflow. The Red Cross is setting up shop here at South Main Baptist Church.
"We are in overflow for the city and Salvation Army, so we're offering a place for people that need it to get out of the weather, to come inside we have cots and blankets," said Red Cross shelter manager Debra Vaughn.

Beulah D. lost her home in Harvey and was the first one here to come in out of the cold.

"I'm very, very, very grateful," Beulah said.

Then there are those like Maurice Esparza, who are choosing the streets over shelter.

"Tell me where you are sleeping tonight," asked reporter Chauncy Glover.

"Right here," Maurice said. "I'm okay, I'm okay."

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Related Topics:
winter weatherhomelessHouston
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