Jason Brownlee: “My famous last words were, ‘Hurricane Harvey is going to be nothing.’”
Houston, Texas — Early Sunday morning, U.S. Coast Guard pilot Jason Brownlee was woken up by extreme winds and his boss expecting him to return to the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station in Houston to start the rescue missions, according to HuffPost. However, Hurricane Harvey made other plans because Brownlee was already trapped by gallons of water.
A rescue aircraft had to pick Brownlee up from an elementary school parking lot near his house. As soon as he reached the air station, Brownlee rushed to put on his uniform and grabbed his gear and took responsibility for the first rescue mission with a strong crew.
Information regarding the damages caused by Harvey has not been fully divulged.
According to HuffPost, more than 32,000 families were searching for shelter since their homes were destroyed. Unfortunately, 38 people lost their lives during the flood. But over 72,000 people were saved from the disaster, and at least 744 were aerial rescues in places that received the most damage.
One week after the Harvey first made an impact, Brownlee’s team took media reporters on an observation mission to investigate the two cities that were hit the hardest, Beaumont and Port Arthur. Some of the surrounding cities are still underwater, and rescue missions are ongoing.
Brownlee saved over 20 lives in the last three days, which is three times as many people he has rescued in his three-year career as a pilot.
“My famous last words were, ‘Hurricane Harvey is going to be nothing,’” said Brownlee.