Scott Gordon

Volunteers Help Tarrant County Flood Victims

Flood victims in Everman and Forest Hill are getting a helping hand from a volunteer group that offered to rip out water-damaged floors and walls.

The group, Team Rubicon, is working in nine homes, including Naomi Collins’ house on Burly Street in Forest Hill.

Collins, 80, was sleeping Friday night when she awoke to the sound of rain – and water everywhere.

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"I said, 'What's going on?'” she said. “I really didn't know what was going on."

Collins, a retired beautician, said the water was almost up to her knees.

"It was scary,” she said. “I know that."

Her home of 31 years was wrecked.

"I said, 'What am I going to do?'" she said.

While she was waiting to learn what her insurance will cover, Team Rubicon showed up out of nowhere.

"They just came to my door, and introduced themselves, told me who they were. And I thought, 'Thank God, they must be the angels,’” she said.

Team Rubicon is a nonprofit group of about 85,000 volunteers -- many with military connections -- who help out in disasters like floods and hurricanes.

"A lot of our volunteers went out to help out with (Hurricane) Florence, and we wanted to make sure that the local community knew that if we needed something here, we're here too,” said Matt Foster.

Foster, an Army veteran, is now an executive at AT&T.

Like many of the other volunteers, he's using vacation time to be here.

"It gives me the opportunity to use some of my strengths and skill sets to get dirty again," Foster said. "To be able to help her, knowing she may not have had anybody to help her, is really impactful for us. It gives us that sense of service and worth that we're doing good for somebody."

Team Rubicon is based in Los Angeles, but its national operations center is in Grand Prairie.

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