A New Year’s Home Away from Home

By Katie Wilkes, volunteer contributor, American Red Cross

6 year-old Craigory beamed as he drew a perfect picture with his brand new art set on New Year’s Eve next to his twin sister Corinda.

“He’s a budding Picasso, really! His absolute favorite thing to do is art at home,” his mother Robin said as she watched him.

In the aftermath of the deadly tornado outbreak that struck December 26th, the Hill family’s house was spared while every house around it was devastated.  “God spared us, but we still can’t go back yet,” his mother Robin said.

On December 31st, they rang in 2016 with several others as kids played games, ate party cupcakes and received gifts generously donated by the community at Red Cross shelter in Garland, Texas. For a moment, things seemed close to “normal” on this very different holiday.

“I’m just so grateful and glad we are here,” Robin said as Red Crossers played with the kids.

Craigory turned to show his finished masterpiece to his mother with a grin on his face. On a bright piece of paper was a picture of his house, still untouched. For now, Craigory’s family will continue to receive hot meals from the Red Cross while they work to find their way back to normal. But on New Year’ Eve, home was where his heart was – even though he was far from it.

The Hill family enjoys spending time with Red Crossers on NYE.
The Hill family enjoys spending time with Red Crossers on NYE.
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