A DACA 'Dreamer' Drowned Trying To Rescue Harvey Flood Victims Outside Houston | KERA News

A DACA 'Dreamer' Drowned Trying To Rescue Harvey Flood Victims Outside Houston

Sep 5, 2017

Five stories that have North Texas talking: Houston volunteer who died over the weekend was a DACA recipient; Beyoncé celebrates her 36th birthday; a Texas sushi bar gives back; and more.

The body of a volunteer rescuer in Houston was recovered on Sunday. Alonso Guillen, a 31-year-old disc jockey and recipient of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, disappeared last Wednesday along with two friends after their boat capsized on Cypress Creek in Spring.

Family members pulled Guillen’s body from the creek on Sunday afternoon, the Houston Chronicle reports. His father, Jesus Guillen, said he had asked his son not to go out during the storm, but his son insisted on helping people in floodwaters.

With the recovery of his body, the death toll from Hurricane Harvey climbs to nearly 60, and officials warn that more bodies could be found.

Guillen’s mother, Rita Ruiz de Guillen, said from her home in Mexico that she had hoped U.S. authorities would allow her into the country to bury her son, but was previously turned back at the border.

Alonso Guillen's body was recovered over the weekend from Cypress Creek after his boat capsized last Wednesday while trying to save flood victims in Spring.
Credit Courtesy of SuperMix 101.9 Facebook page

Alonso Guillen was born in Piedras Negras, Mexico, and moved to Lufkin in his teens. Family members said he was allowed to stay in the U.S. because of DACA, an Obama-era immigration program that prevents the deportation of immigrants who were brought to the U.S. under the age of 16.

Guillen’s death comes as President Trump reportedly prepares to end the DACA program – with a six-month implementation delay to allow Congress to devise a legislative alternative. This decision, which is expected to be formally announced today, would fulfill Trump’s promise to eliminate the program while he was on the campaign trail.

DACA has given about 800,000 undocumented immigrants, including more than 120,000 in Texas, a renewable, two-year work permit and a reprieve from deportation proceedings. [The Houston Chronicle]

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  • Crews from Mexico are expected to arrive in Texas this week to help with hurricane recovery efforts. Gov. Greg Abbott accepted Mexico’s aid last week – which includes all-terrain vehicles, satellite telephones, generators, mobile kitchens, water treatment supplies and pumps. Mexican consulates in Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and Austin have also set up mobile units at shelters for hurricane evacuees to provide medical assistance, document services and cash assistance. Mexico also helped the U.S. after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. [The Dallas Morning News]
  • Happy birthday Beyoncé! The pop star and Houston native celebrated her 36th birthday on Monday, and her friends and family gifted her timeless photos – recreations of the most popular look from the “Formation” music video. Beyoncé’s mother, Tina Knowles Lawson; daughter Blue Ivy Carter; and even former First Lady Michelle Obama donned a wide-brimmed black hat, long braids, lots of jewelry and an off-the-shoulder black top. [People Magazine] 
    Former First Lady Michelle Obama dressed up like Beyoncé to celebrate the pop star's birthday
    Credit Bey-Lite Instagram page
  • Neither floods, nor mold, nor flying insulation can stop Fateyva Miles, a mail carrier in Houston. She worked the Labor Day holiday Monday because no mail had been delivered for four days in her Scarsdale delivery area, southeast of downtown Houston. [KERA News]
  • A sushi bar in Port Arthur prepared 1,000 meals to help victims of Hurricane Harvey. In a heartwarming Facebook post that’s now going viral, Keith Nguyen said his dad, Phe Nguyen, and uncle, Binh Nguyen, worked tirelessly in their restaurant to help combat food shortages in the area – all while dealing with the impacts of the storm themselves. The post has been shared 437,000 times. [Next Shark]

The High Five is KERA’s daily roundup of stories from Dallas-Fort Worth and across the state. Explore our archives here. And sign up for our weekly email for the North Texas news you need to know.