When disaster strikes, even the simplest things — like a place to bathe or do laundry — become precious. Local members of the Texas Baptist Men have deployed to the Houston area with a mobile shower and laundry unit to help hard-hit locals regain these small dignities.
    Charles Carroll said that four men from Brown and Comanche counties are currently operating the mobile unit in Rosenberg to support Texas Task Force 1 and 2, Urban Search and Rescue units. “I delivered the trailer on Sunday and was there through yesterday,” Carroll said.
    Jose Carbajal of May’s North Lake Community Church is one of the men helping with the mobile unit. “It’s still raining down here,” he said on Tuesday.
    Carbajal said his church and Comanche’s First Baptist are two of the many local congregations accepting donations for the Houston area. He said his mobile unit experienced an act of generosity for itself on the way to Rosenberg. “In Seale we had a transmission hose busted,” he said, “and the auto shop fixed it for free because we were going to Houston. They were very nice.
    “We need everybody’s prayers,” he said. “It’s pretty bad down here.”
    Carroll said those who wish to help can find more information at www.texasbaptistmen.org or www.nvoad.org, the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster website.
    “There will be volunteers needed there for a couple of years,” Carroll said.
    Others from Brown County have gone to the hurricane area including 15 National Guard soldiers from Camp Bowie, and additional soldiers may be deployed.
    Two Brownwood firefighters deployed as part of the Texas Interstate Fire Mutual Assistance (TIFMAS) and are working out of a Houston fire station, Brownwood Fire Marshal Buddy Preston said.
    Preston anticipated leaving Wednesday for Victoria, where he will be working under the Texas Department of Emergency Management.
    Numerous drop-off locations for donations of bottled water and other supplies that will be driven to the hurricane area have been established in Brown County including the Central Fire Station.
    Packages of bottled drinks, diapers, baby wipes and stuffed animals that will be given to children as “comfort toys” have been collected in the Central Fire Station. Preston said the stuffed animals belonged to a woman who collected them before her death, and the woman’s sister donated them.
    Other drop-off locations include:
    • National Guard Armory at Camp Bowie, where three soldiers organized a bottled water drive.
    • Dazzling Divas
    • Texas Farm Bureau Insurance in Brownwood.
    • Brownwood Senior Citizens Center.
     • KOXE Radio.
    Social media has listed additional drop-off sites.