Splendora man whose home burned, flooded thanks neighbors for heroism during Hurricane Harvey

SPLENDORA, Texas – Armando Velardez’s Splendora home caught fire after an electrical explosion during Hurricane Harvey. His home also flooded. 

Velardez told KPRC 2 in October 2017 that he awoke to an explosion. He and his grandson then smelled smoke. 

They evacuated the flooded house.

Local emergency services were overwhelmed with calls from other Hurricane Harvey victims and didn’t make it to the fire scene, Velardez said. Instead, Velardez said his neighbors managed to fight the fire with their water hoses. 

Velardez said part of his house and his entire garage were burned. 

“(I told my neighbors), ‘I can fix the house, but I can’t if it’s burned down. But I have a house because of you guys.’ I just want to tell you that I have a home and I thank you.”

Velardez, who has lung cancer, is still living with his daughter, but is looking forward to going home soon.

This story is part of our KPRC 2 project "Houston Strong: The Stories Behind Hurricane Harvey." View all of the stories collected from the hurricane's survivors here.

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