This is an update (Wednesday, August 30th) on the Hurricane Harvey restoration efforts at Victoria Electric Cooperative (VEC) per Bryan Lightfoot, General Manager/CEO who is on site:
“As of 6:00 am this morning, Victoria Electric Cooperative has restored power to approximately 9,000 of 22,000 meters. Our second BEC crew arrived yesterday afternoon and went straight to work with Kirby, Shawn, and myself. Yesterday was extremely productive for our crews. We were able to restore power to several communities and subdivisions. All of the VEC Members have been extremely patient and appreciative.
Last night work concluded at 8:45 pm and at that time the 6 of us stopped at a community restaurant for dinner. After being seated we were informed by the waitress that the owner would be buying our meals. They appreciated our efforts and wanted to show their gratitude. Obviously, we thanked the waitress for their hospitality. But the gratitude didn’t end there. Before we left we had at least three tables of patrons walk over to our table and thank us for coming to help their community. One gentlemen placed a $100 bill on the table and said he wanted to pay for our meal. We informed him that it had been comped. Another lady came over to tell us that her and her husband wanted to buy our meal but since it was paid for, asked if she could give us money for our next meal. We explained we couldn’t accept her money. She began to cry and wanted us to know how much it meant for us to leave our families to assist the people of Victoria. Ironically, this lady’s power had not been restored yet.
It was obvious to me that last night’s experience at this restaurant meant more to our men than any paycheck. I wish our media could show more moments like this. Communities coming together for a common purpose instead of protesting against one another over political differences.
Kirby and I will be working with the other four until this evening. After work concludes, Kirby and I will be driving back to Bartlett leaving Shawn, Patrick, Ruben, and Brent to continue the assistance.
This experience has been very educational for me and inspirational for all of us. I appreciate all of you sharing our men with the Members of VEC this week. Someday, the Members of Bartlett EC may be in need and I am confident the men and women of VEC will be there to help us.”
Your Bartlett Electric Cooperative