Children, elderly waiting on Hurricane Ike

By September 12, 2008

USA (MNN) — Residents of Calder Woods in Beaumont, Texas, a retirement community run by Buckner International, began evacuations Monday as directors watched Hurricane Ike on a path toward the northern coastline. 

By Wednesday, however, Ike sharply changed direction, and everything was put on hold. Buckner shifted their attention to their Rio Grande Children's Home near the Rio Grande Valley  as the storm turned toward the south of Texas. Buckner has warned the Children's Home staff to be ready to find safety if Ike becomes a higher category storm for its predicted Saturday-morning landfall.

The evacuation of Calder Woods was the second this month. The first was August 31 when residents were
transported to safety in preparation for Hurricane Gustav. They were housed at three other Buckner retirement communities until September 4th.

Evacuations are done in compliance and after consulting with state officials. Pearl Merritt,
President of Buckner Retirement Services, said, "It's the right thing to do and the safest decision to make."

Even though the second exit was put on hold, it was not cancelled. Residents were instructed not to unpack before Thursday. Already, Calder Woods' leadership had reserved travel coaches in case they are needed Thursday morning. They've even set up a toll free help line for families and residents.

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