When a Hurricane Harvey boat hero damaged his boat while rescuing flood victims, Mt. Houston Marine, Blue Wave Boats, and Northwest Fiberglass stepped up to help.
Texas Fish & Game editor-in-chief Chester Moore was at Mount Houston Marine in the latter part of February. It has been quite a while since a Hurricane Harvey rolled through, but we’re still hearing stories of heroics and really cool things that came out of that situation.
Chester was there with Pastor Mark Barnhill, Mark McKenzie of Mt. Houston Marine and Danny Miller of Northwest Fiberglass. And they have quite an interesting story to tell.
Harvey Boat Hero
Mark Barnhill here decided he was going to help rescue some folks in his Blue Wave and he found out that it wasn’t just floodwater, but there was a lot of current.
Mark Barnhill: “Yeah the current over there in Kingwood was just really bad. It would just take you when you go past a building and would just take you and slam you into poles and so I smashed both sides of my Blue Wave.
“Danny at Northwest Fiberglass really helped us out and fixed it back up.”
Chester, to Mark McKenzie: “Now what did you think when he called? I mean, I know you guys are a family-owned operation. You guys have great customer service, but what did you think we’re gonna help this guy out for sure because he’s out risking his life helping other people?”
Mark McKenzie: “Exactly, and then he had had some previous bad luck with the boat and so I just didn’t want to see him have to go through that again and he’s just a great man and a great customer of ours and I thought I would reach out to Blue Wave and to Danny and see if we
couldn’t get this taken care of for him without him having to involve his insurance or any out of pocket for him and everybody just stepped up to the plate took care of it and everything worked out like it should.”
Chester to Danny Miller: “How bad was it Danny?”
Danny Miller: “It was pretty bad. It was broken on both sides where it had gotten up against the light poles and up against a tree. It pulled the rubber loose and pulled the deck and all apart. It was nothing we couldn’t fix.”
Chester: “The interesting thing about this is you hear a lot of like After Effects or this is something coming out many months later but just shows people working together in the community even in the business community here to do something important.”
Chester, to Mark Barnhill: “When you bought your Blue Wave, I know you weren’t thinking you were going to be driving around Kingwood in it, right? But you weren’t just out fishing you’re a Pastor, so you’re kind of fishing for men out there, literally, at this point.”
Mark Barnhill: “I felt like my flock was on the other side of the river, and we had to get to them. So I grabbed a fellow church member and now we put our waders on and went after them.
“I mean they were, like I said, they were plucking them off the roofs with the Coast Guard helicopters on this apartment complex and we got in there and the next thing you know there was a bunch of small boats following us. And then the Cajun Navy showed up and we just kind of got it rolling and getting some folks out of some apartments.
“The police are in there and the current was just turning everybody over. It was crazy.”
Chester: “Yeah it was a really interesting scenario. I was in oOrange and we had the same thing happen, just about a day and a half later when everything kind of went down but we’re glad we’re all still here.”
To Mark McKenzie: “And I bet you would love to hear from Mark again, but probably not about wrecking his boat again right?”
Mark McKenzie: “Pretty much. You know, it’d be nice to just get a picture of him one time or maybe he could bring by a fish and go look at this.”