“GET OUT OR DIE!”
A cavalcade of boats and rescue vehicles ride in and out of Vidor, TX, carrying families from drowned houses to shelters.
The water level of this small Southeast Texas town 120 miles East of Houston continued to rise through last Thursday, cresting over the tops of cars and even some houses. One of these houses belongs to Jeremy and Christine Christensen, owners of CrossFit Vidor — the town’s only CrossFit affiliate whose doors haven’t been opened for 30 days and is already underwater, literally and likely financially.
“We added up all our potential gym losses and it was well over $20,000,” said Jeremy Christensen, co-owner of CrossFit Vidor.
The couple had poured their entire personal savings into opening this affiliate. Though it’s insured, their carrier doesn’t insure flood damage, an unfortunate fact many Texas boxes are realizing today.
“We were devastated because of all the hard work that we have put into launching the gym,” Christensen said. “However, we were even more devastated, because we know what Crossfit Vidor represents: new beginnings, friendships, community, accountability, next steps and new life. We know we are here to make a difference in people’s lives. We want our dream to continue.”
“GET OUT OR DIE!”
Monday, August 28, at around 3PM, Christensen put his seven-months pregnant wife Christine into a kayak to float her down the road where a boat was waiting to take them to safety. They didn’t have anything with them.
Just north of Vidor, Tyler County Judge Jacques Blanchette told residents to “GET OUT OR DIE” — a dire and serious plea to surrounding residents not to underestimate that more was coming.
A few days later, the Christensen’s would see how real that warning was when a friend texted a photo of their home, the roof popping over the water by just a few feet.
“The flood waters eventually rose so high they covered the top of our house,” Jeremy Christensen said. “We lost everything.”
Like their affiliate, their home isn’t insured for floods and only one of their cars has full coverage.
No cars. No home. No belongings. No business. No income. And a baby coming December 1.
After all this, the Christiansens plan to rebuild and reopen as soon as the waters recede. They’ve already setup a donation page to help fund some of the repairs so they can open doors as soon as possible and start generating income.
“We have some wonderful friends who are a part of CrossFit Vidor and our church who received less damage that we are going to help repair their house and we are going to live with them until we figure out our housing,” Christiansen said.
This family and community really needs help — not more and not less than others, but they need it. You can donate below: