Tornado victims in southwest Houston picking up their lives

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- The recovery is slow going for hundreds of southwest Houston residents whose apartments were ravaged by a tornado on Sunday.

Eleven buildings at the Rockport apartments were damaged. And now some are getting a chance to retrieve important belongings they left behind. Three buildings will have to be demolished another 8 may have to come down as well and now hundreds of people are trying to figure out where they will live.

For some residents of the Rockport Apartment complex cleaning up and getting out are the priorities now. Marco Rodriguez has another concern.

Photos of damage from around the Houston area

"What are we going to do? We don't have, I don't have any place to go," said Rodriguez.

His apartment was in the path of a tornado that hit the Rockport Apartment Complex in Southwest Houston.

"What's going to happen to us," asked Rodriguez.

For now Rodriguez is at staying the Red Cross shelter, but right now no one knows how long it will take to get Rodriguez and his neighbors into a new place

Meanwhile the city of Houston is screening apartment residents to find out who needs a new home right away. Those in the severely damaged buildings are the priority.

"We have the resources set aside to help with moving costs, first months rent and getting them settled, but since many other units were damaged to a lesser degree, we will certainly work with other residents," said Houston Mayor Annise Parker.

Some residents want to stay here.

"I got to have a place to live, I live here, I have been here for 34 years," said Damon Leaming.

Leaming's building survived the storm, but he's still not sure if he will be forced out or allowed to stay while the damaged buildings are demolished on renovated.

"It's going to be a real financial bind on us to have to move, and I don't want to move. Even if I don't have power, power can be restored sooner or later," said Leaming.

Police are here making sure no one does any looting. It could be a day or two, maybe more before those who need a permanent place to live, get one.
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