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Beaumont Reels From Harvey's Gut Punch: 'Detours And Over-The-Road Flooding Are Everywhere'

Water over the road, as seen on the way to Beaumont, Texas.
Casey Cheek/Texas Standard
Water over the road, as seen on the way to Beaumont, Texas.

From Texas Standard:Texas Standard has been traveling along the Gulf Coast in the aftermath of Harvey: first Corpus Christi, then Galveston, and today, Beaumont. 

It’s known as the Golden Triangle, host David Brown says, “but in the immediate aftermath of Harvey, the straight routes connecting the towns of Beaumont, Orange and Port Arthur are for the most part underwater. Detours and over-the-road flooding are everywhere. A 25-mile jaunt has become a two-hour voyage.  And good luck if your gas gauge is low."

“None of this turned out like I thought it would,” Brown says.  “When we landed in Corpus Christi a few days back, it already looked like a place on the road to recovery. And moving up the coast … Galveston, on the front line of some of history's worst storms to hit Texas, sandbagged and soggy but relatively unscathed – then this. The Golden Triangle: Harvey's third gut punch to Texas.”

Still, “as hard as it is to describe the destruction and devastation that this part of our country has endured,” Brown says, “it is just as hard to communicate what it feels like being around others on fire with a shared sense of mission, an enlarged sense of community – and saving lives in the process."

“I've heard a lot of people tell me over the past few days, ‘this is the stuff that makes Texas Texas.’ Texans like to talk like that. But I'm thinking they're right, too.”

David and technical director Casey Cheek spoke with people in the Beaumont region about their experiences: Col. Scott MacLeod, commander Task Force Harvey; Tyler McAnn, a volunteer with a boat from Louisiana; a family rescued from their home in Orange, and others.

Listen to their experiences in the audio player above.

Copyright 2020 KUT 90.5. To see more, visit KUT 90.5.

David D. Brown is executive producer and host of the award-winning cultural journalism program Texas Music Matters at NPR affiliate KUT-FM in Austin. He is former anchor of the award-winning public radio business program Marketplace, and a veteran public radio journalist. He has reported national and international affairs for Monitor Radio from bases in Atlanta, Boston, London, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.
David Brown
David entered radio journalism thanks to a love of storytelling, an obsession with news, and a desire to keep his hair long and play in rock bands. An inveterate political junkie with a passion for pop culture and the romance of radio, David has reported from bases in Washington, London, Los Angeles, and Boston for Monitor Radio and for NPR, and has anchored in-depth public radio documentaries from India, Brazil, and points across the United States and Europe. He is, perhaps, known most widely for his work as host of public radio's Marketplace. Fulfilling a lifelong dream of moving to Texas full-time in 2005, Brown joined the staff of KUT, launching the award-winning cultural journalism unit "Texas Music Matters."
Casey Cheek