There were angels in Bridge City Sunday according to Scott Hargroder and his wife Diana who live on Rachel in Bridge City. They were one of the beneficiaries of “Mid-County Kindness,” the relief effort that brought thousands of volunteers to Bridge City to attempt a one day clean-up of the city.

Daughter, Holly Caldwell, got permission from her boss at Newtron to help. “I put together my own team,” she said. Most of the teams that day averaged 15 volunteers. “I have 25 members on mine,” she said.

“I actually think I saw wings on the back of these red shirts today. You can see what they did…for free,” said Hargroder. The wall and ceilings of the entire house had been stripped to the studs and rafters.
“That’s an awful lot of work in one day,” said Hargroder. “It was soccer moms… ten year old boys and girls in here swinging hammers.

“The ladies washed our dishes in bleach so my wife can save them.
A dumpster full of dry wall, insulation, and other building materials was in back of the house. A trailer full of materials had been emptied in dumpsters set up near Wal Mart.

”We’ve had them stop along the road asking if we need help. Two ladies in red shirts from Beaumont stopped about an hour ago.”

“We have had “angels” from Mid County helping us because the insurance companies have abandoned us… the people of Bridge City.

Hargroder is upset because he is a retiree from All State Insurance. “If they are treating me like this, imagine how they are treating others.”

“Water came up this high,” he said, pointing to a spot on the wall that was approximately four feet high.

The house across the street from Hargroder was the only house on the street that did not flood.

Hargroder says water damage from his roof has allowed mold to grow, but insurance is denying that it was caused by roof damage.

Daughter, Mandy Stanley, who is a Bridge City graduate, had been there since day one helping her mother with clean-up. She has been “sick as a dog” from the mold and had to go to the hospital once.

“I don’t want to do this again,” said Mrs. Hargroder, “I’ve lived in Bridge City over thirty-five years.” Her mother told her to get out while she was still young enough to do it. They plan to move to Waco when things get settled here.

Mrs. Hargroder stated that her ex-husband had recently died and this was the house her children grew up in. For her daughter’s, losing the house was like losing their father all over again.

Scott had said earlier, “FEMA hasn’t been Johnny on the spot either,” but the FEMA inspector showed up 30 minutes after the volunteers had finished stripping the walls.

”I want to thank all the people from Mid County. Family and friends…that’s all we’ve got,” Hargroder said.

About Penny LeLeux

Penny has worked at The Record Newspapers since 2006. A member of the editorial staff, she has "done everything but print it." Most frequently she writes entertainment reviews and human interest stories, with a little paranormal thrown in from time to time.She has been a lifelong member of the Orangefield community.