A year after Harvey, woman recounts leaving her home of 42 years

HOUSTON – Hurricane Harvey forced an 85-year-old from her home in Ponderosa Forest in northwest Harris County. A year later, she’s settling into a new home.

“I finally decided the right thing to do is make a change,” Betty Campbell said. “I thought, 'I’ve only got so many years and I need to do the best,' and my husband would agree with me.”

Campbell decided to move out of her home, where she had lived for 42 years.

It’s where KPRC2 reporter Cathy Hernandez first met her, a month after the storm.

“(My children) hate to see me going through this, especially after losing their dad,” she said in September.

At the time, her home was gutted and a lifetime of mementos had been scattered in the front yard.

The devastation hit only five months after her husband died after suffering cardiac arrest.

“It was a bad year," Campbell said, as she recounted the experience. "Losing Dick, my husband, and then the loss of the house. The two things together were hard."

With help from her flood insurance, Campbell started the renovations. Then, her three children encouraged her to sell to an investor.

“Some people were saying, ‘You’re buying a house at 85?'" Campbell said. "Yes. My dad lived to be 91, so you know. I have a great-aunt that lived to be 100.”

Campbell was able to refurbish some furniture, like some chairs, a footstool and a dining room set. They all sit in her new home not too far away from her beloved Ponderosa Forest.

"The good Lord took care of me and I always say, 'I think I have an angel on my shoulder,'" she said.

Campbell encouraged everyone to get flood insurance and take a good inventory of all of their belongings. She said those things helped her tremendously during this last year.

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