My First Hurricane Experience: Hector Valencia

By Dedicated Volunteer on October 27, 2017

Inclusive Voices is a series of featured guest bloggers, including but is not limited to self-advocates, family members, Sunrise Board members, volunteers and other vocal advocates for people with disabilities. The independent, personal and unique views expressed here are meant to reflect the diversity of the greater disabilities community. We hope you will join us to help focus on all people, their talents, skills and accomplishments.

Please keep in mind that the views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Sunrise Community, Inc. and/or any of our affiliates. All bloggers are guests stating personally held opinions.

Guest Blogger: By Hector Valencia, Volunteer & Self-Advocate

Everybody was scared when Hurricane Irma was developing as a hurricane storm. It was a category 5. My family and I had to get prepared by buying water, food, batteries, and supplies. We were hoping that it wasn’t going to be a straight hit, but as it got closer and closer, it looked like we were going to get the worst of it.

As we saw everybody was going to evacuate, we decided two days before Irma hit South Florida to leave town and hoped for the best. On the first day of the road trip, we made it to Orlando. We stayed there the night and enjoyed family time. The second day, we saw the news, and we found out that Irma was turning more left and up. So we were like “alright, let’s go further north.” So we left early morning to Savannah. It took us four hours to make it there.

However, before we made it to Savannah, we made a quick stop in Jacksonville. We were doing a little bit of tourism. We stopped by the Jacksonville Jaguars football stadium. We took a couple of pictures; and hanged out for a bit there, and then we took off to Savannah.

We made it to Savannah late that day. We were so tired that we just watched TV and went to sleep. The next day, we decided to go to South Carolina to go visit some friends. We got there and it was raining quite a bit, but it wasn’t too bad. Our friends invited us to dinner. We had a great time because we hadn’t seen them in years, so it was good that we reunited again that day.

Later that evening, we got back to Savannah. I was so tired that when I got to the hotel, I took a shower and fell asleep right away.

The next day, we went back home to South Florida. When we got back, everything was fine, except for a couple trees that fell down on the sidewalk. We had power and everything so we were good and lucky.