It's every mother's worst nightmare: being separated from your child. At the mall, at the park, at a sporting event, it doesn't matter. Losing sight of your child for even a moment can cause panic like you've never felt before.
For families stuck in Hurricane Harvey, losing sight of a child could be a matter of life or death.
One mom in Houston, Da’Jauh Hennix, was trying to escape her quickly flooding house along with her mother and 8-month-old daughter, Paige. Hennix was struggling through water up to her neck while holding Paige above her head.
“I was crying I was scared,” Hennix said.
Cpl. Reed Clark of the Harris County Constable’s Office Precinct 2 was out patrolling the area and spotted the family in need.
“I heard people screaming ‘Baby!’” Clark said. “She was holding the baby up and then the water would come up and you could see her neck and her head come under the water and she was trying to get to higher ground.”
Cpl. Clark came to Hennix' rescue, grabbing Paige and bringing her into his boat.
“He was like, she’s going to be in a black truck at the front. I’m like that’s fine,” Hennix recounted.
But it was not fine. Hennix would not see her baby for hours, with no idea of where she might be.
Hennix and her mother caught to higher ground, but they ran into a slight problem.
“We’re still walking, we get to the front of the road, there’s so many black trucks," Hennix said. She searched and searched and searched, but Paige was nowhere.
“I was panicking, I was crying. My mom, she was scared and crying as well,” Hennix said. The duo was sent to a nearby shelter, but they were still missing Paige. The family took to Facebook, hoping their pleas would fall on the right ears.
At the same time, Cpl. Clark was trying to find Paige's mother. His post on Facebook was shared over 32,000 times and seen more than 2.6 million times. Finally, someone connected the dots and got Paige back to her family.
“She had a new blanket, she was dry, she was fed. When we got her she was sleeping,” Hennix said.
Cpl. Clark and the Hennix family are planning to get together once things in Houston settle down, and Clark has even offered to buy the family a meal.
“She is the perfect example of a great mother,” Clark said. “She didn’t say help me one bit, she handed her baby over and said, ‘Help my baby, get my baby out of here.’”
We are sending our prayers to all those affected by Hurricane Harvey, and we hope all people in need find someone like Cpl. Clark to help their family.