Today I visited the State Emergency Operations Center in Austin as Texas prepares for Hurricane Ike to make landfall. Thousands of volunteers, state, federal and local employees along with many private businesses working around the clock to keep Texans safe from the storm. I urge all Texans to heed the warnings of local officials, as meteorologists say Ike’s storm surge could cause massive flooding and power outages in cities along our coastline.
The Texas Department of Agriculture is strategically placing food supplies around the state to help feed evacuees at shelters. It makes me proud to see the large numbers of volunteers who stand willing to help other Texans in their time of need. It’s because of their selflessness that others are guided through such a difficult time.
As we prepare for the worst, and hope for the best, we cannot forget the heroes who lost their lives on this very day seven years ago. I encourage all Texans to take time today to reflect on the great loss our country felt on 9/11, but to also remember the resiliency and fortitude embedded in the character of Americans that allows us to overcome such tragedies. We honor the men and women of the United States armed forces who have stepped up to keep America safe while fighting for the basic freedoms and democracy.