Thursday, October 23, 2008

ATTENTION: Please, Please, Please--If you have a close relative missing, contact officials at the Medical Examiners Office (409-935-9274) and give them samples of DNA so that more victims of Hurricane Ike can be identified!!! 10/23/2008
DNA needed to identify Hurricane Ike victims
08:06 PM CDT on Wednesday, October 22, 2008
CHRIS PASCHENKO / Galveston Daily News
GALVESTON, Texas -- The Galveston County Medical Examiner¹s Office began this week collecting bone samples to identify three victims of Hurricane Ike.
John Florence, a spokesman for the medical examiner, asked immediate family members who believe their relatives are missing from the hurricane to provide DNA samples for comparison.
The medical examiner would take oral swabs from close relatives, such as children, parents or siblings, to provide a DNA match, Florence said.
There were 15 people from Galveston County who died either directly or indirectly from the storm. Authorities have yet to identify two drowning victims, a man and woman found on a Goat Island earlier this month in debris piles. A third unidentified victim found on Pelican Island was a woman believed to be Paula Sue Mercer, but dental records proved otherwise, Florence said.
“We weren’t able to match them, and that’s why we have to rely on DNA,” Florence said.
Bone samples will be sent to the University of North Texas to compare DNA on the oral swabs, Florence said.
Call the Medical Examiner’s office at 409-935-9274 to give a DNA sample. 10/23/2008
How would I locate people who witnessed Ike’s destruction of Crystal Beach? Our house at 1983 Patton Beach Rd. off of Gulf Shores Drive was completely destroyed. Since we didn’t have flood insurance; the Ins. Co. says we have to prove that wind or tornadoes destroyed the house or they won’t pay. Do you know any witnesses that would be willing to swear to this?

The only way would be to contact some of the people that we have listed here on our website or our blog. My parents have wind and flood insurance, but so far no one has contacted them either way. Some, if not all of the people that stayed behind in Crystal Beach are fairly traumatized by their own experiences and may not be able to help either. I just hate when insurance companies turn an already devastating situation into and even uglier situation. I hope and pray that you get the help that you need. Our prayers are with you.
Connie Tomerlin
PS: If your insurance company still refuses to pay, then file for FEMA assistance. Do that right away! I believe the number is 1-800-621-FEMA and the website is . Hope this helps! 10/22/2008
Hi Connie,I hope that there has been some progress in Bolivar Peninsula's effort to rebuild. I did notice that in the Galveston Daily News that another victim of Ike has been identified: Shane Williams, age 33. are so many challenges in searching the debris piles. I pray that they will find a way to expedite the process. I can only imagine what the families of the missing are going through.
God Bless,

Chris Stange

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