In less than one year, Team Rubicon has helped me find a new purpose for my life in a way that I have never felt before. Back in September 2017, I happened to be watching a college football game and a short video came on about Team Rubicon and the recovery efforts in Houston after Hurricane Harvey. Chills rushed through my body and I said to myself, “I can do that!”
From that moment on, I was hooked on TR. I was totally committed to stepping into the arena to help people on their worst day. Within five days, I had passed all the online requirements and the background check. I was ready for deployment. Since that time, I have been to Texas three times. Initially, I deployed on Operation Hard Hustle in the direct aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Then, I returned to Houston this past May to help rebuild homes that were impacted by Harvey as part of the Team Rubicon Houston Rebuild Program. Most recently, I deployed to Hidalgo County, Texas on Operation Magic Valley to help residents in the area recover from severe flooding.
These deployments have literally changed my outlook on life.
In every aspect of Team Rubicon, whether it is training, deployments or socials, the only thing that matters is we have chosen to help and serve others. It does not matter one iota what your gender, age, sexuality, religious beliefs, political stance or physical capabilities are, you are a TRibe member and we all share the same goal – to help and serve others on their worst day. I have been blessed to have worked with and beside some of the greatest men and women, you will ever find. Friendships are instant and long lasting and that is hard to find.
Furthermore, the joy and friendships that are given by the homeowners is nothing less than amazing. This is what it’s all about. Even though their lives have been turned upside down through the tragedy that they have experienced brought on by flood, fire, or wind, they give to us those things that are priceless – their love and thanks. My faith and belief in God helps, tremendously, in processing the situation that the homeowners are in because I don’t have a clue in how they are feeling.
While disaster response deployments are truly a life-changing experience where we are helping people in the wake of a disaster on their worst day, I found that the Houston Rebuild Program is such a different emotional experience. During most disaster response operations, we are helping residents muck-out their homes and in some cases are literally carrying their belongings to the curb to help them get on the road to recovery. With the Rebuild Program, we get the opportunity to be on the back end of the disaster, helping families get back into their homes.
I have learned a lot in the last year with Team Rubicon. I have seen how resilient Texans are. I have seen the best in humanity when neighbors come together to help each other. I have seen the impact a group of Team Rubicon volunteers committed to the same mission can make in the wake of a disaster. And, most importantly, I have learned that Mother Nature really should not mess with Texas (or any state) because Team Rubicon always stands ready to punch natural disasters in the teeth. From initial response operations to helping residents rebuild their homes, we have a team of 80,000 strong ready to roll up our sleeves and help people on their worst day.
I could go on and on about the merits of Team Rubicon. It is the greatest organization that I have every belonged to…’nuff said!