Nearly one year to the day that Hurricane Harvey hit Southeast Texas, the Texans welcomed two families to their closed Thursday practice.
"The more we can do for people that are still recovering from Harvey – you know, I think J.J. (Watt) put it the best when he said last year, 'It's not going to take like a month. It might take a year, it might take two years, it might take three years,'" head coach Bill O'Brien said.
Raquel Sahagan and Melvin Garrett and their families were among the many who lost their homes to the devastation and flooding caused by Harvey. Sahagan and her family of five lost everything when their home flooded and had to seek shelter on the top floor of a community school. Garrett, a freshman football player at Wheatley High School, also lost everything and had to seek shelter with his family.
Now back in their homes with the assistance of United Way, the families took an afternoon off to meet players, coaches and team executives privately. Players stopped by after practice to sign footballs and take pictures with the guests. Collectively, the Texans organization and the NFL are the largest contributor to the United Way.
"I think Bob McNair and this organization have done a great job over the years supporting everything in Houston," O'Brien said. "There's a great example of it with our support for the people that are suffering still from Harvey."
The Texans were playing their third preseason game at New Orleans last year when Harvey made landfall in Houston. Sunday will mark the one-year anniversary of the hurricane.
The Texans invited two families from the United Way who were affected by Hurricane Harvey to watch practice and receive autographs from players.