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Rockport Restaurant Offering Free Meals to Disaster Victims

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ROCKPORT – Hundreds of generous Rio Grande Valley residents have been donating water, food and other helpful supplies to those in the regions affect by Hurricane Harvey.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS did a report Wednesday over two Valley pilots as they loaded up donations and flew them to Rockport.

The planes arrived safely at the town’s airport, packed with gestures of love.

“I’m too old to go where the guns roar, but I’m not too old to go where they need me,” said Sun Valley aviation pilot Paul Chapman.

The cargo: medical equipment, tree trimmers, chainsaws and pounds upon pounds of food.

Stevie Lew Meinhausen and his daughter load up their trailer with supplies and drive to his barbeque restaurant.

It’s not open for business. It’s open to help, free of charge.

Meinhausen greets people as they enter, “Get something to eat. The kids got something there and just enjoy.”

Handshakes and hugs welcome anyone and everyone at Stevie Lew’s. It’s been a gathering place for years.

“This business was a like a little icon in Rockport,” said Meinhausen.

The family owned and operated business is now where people are turning to for help.

Meinhausen and his family wake up at 7 a.m., deliver food from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. They are feeding hundreds.

“We fine people in little subdivisions. We find them along the side roads. We find them in parking lots in town. We find them by the police station, in fire stations.” Meinhausen said.

It’s grueling, but they won’t stop.

Meinhausen expressed his reason to give, “We were overwhelmed because our home was OK and our business was OK. Our son is home was OK. And my wife's coffee roasting building was OK. And so we said, you know, God has blessed us. What we’ll do is we're just going to take whatever we have in the weeks to come and we’re going to feed people. We're going to clothe them. We're going to provide from whatever people gift to us, we're going to give it out.”

They’re not doing this alone. They’re counting on people, people in the Valley, to continue helping the many who at the moment can’t help themselves.

Meinhausen is grateful for all the Valley residents have done, “The investment that the Valley has made in Rockport, though they might not see it, they can't really see the tangible results of what they've done. Well, I'll tell you what. It's made an incredible difference. And I don't believe anything they hear anywhere else, I know personally it's made a difference in the lives of hundreds of people. Because they took the time to give something. Their hearts opened. They heard the cry from this little town, and it appeal to them to give. And that's a wonderful thing.”

The brisket donated by Valley residents has already been cooking. Tomorrow morning, they’ll be ready to begin making their rounds.

As for the pilots, they have another scheduled delivery tomorrow. They’ll be on standby for the next six weeks.

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