The San Antonio Fire Department threw a birthday party for four kids at the hurricane evacuee shelter.
On Tuesday night, SAFD invited the Fort Sam Houston band to play music and HEB brought cake for everyone.
"We have an amazing platform with our firefighters. We're out there on the coast, in Houston, all over the state rescuing people. But again, these people here are also very important," SAFD Chief Charles Hood said.
Chief Hood recognized the four kids in front of the crowd and shared 12-year-old Jaliyah Victor's personal story. She was born when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. Her mother, Candice Victor, said that she decided not to evacuate because of her father-in-law.
"My dad, God rest his soul, he was a stroke patient and he wanted to stay behind. Me and my siblings felt that if we're gonna die, we're gonna die together, and I stuck behind,” Victor said. “I knew I could lose her but that was a chance I was willing to take.”
Victor said it was her brother who ended up getting her a hospital where she had Jaliyah.
"My brother nearly got shot in the process of all these things to make sure I could get to the hospital to have her,” Victor recalled. “God works in mysterious ways.”
When Hurricane Harvey hit, Victor said her family did not take any chances and they escaped to the shelter in San Antonio. Jaliyah was shy in front of the camera but she expressed her gratitude for SAFD’s kind gesture and their gifts.
"I really appreciate it. Thank you," Jaliyah said.
Jaliyah and her family say that they don't know what to expect when they go back home. They heard that their apartment complex wasn't badly damaged.