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Councilwoman temporarily displaced, still finding ways to serve her community

San Diego councilwoman Vivian Saenz.JPG
Posted at 2:10 PM, Feb 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-17 15:10:33-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Vivian Saenz decided to pack up her car with her family and animals to live in her car to stay warm. But that wasn’t her initial thought when power went out.

"My husband and I took off just to see if anyone would yell at us, anything, just so we could help, or pick them up," Saenz said. "So then I went live (on Facebook) and of course at the same time you go live you let all these other people (know) you’re not in this alone. You have someone to talk to."

The San Diego councilwoman lost power about mid-day on Monday. Her house got too cold for her. So when she had the idea to move into her car, temporarily, she invited others to do the same.

"We went ahead and started up the other car," said Saenz. "We put blankets in there. It was a child and her daddy and we let them stay here. And then I had another friend that lives on her own and she was afraid. I said come park your car. So now we call it Motel 6."

Saenz says she understands the ice has caused problems and electric companies needed to do "controlled blackouts," but she asks why it couldn't be more reasonable?

"It's your company," she said. "You have people paying your light bill. Care enough to at least try to go and do something for half the town, for this half of town--this half of town can help the other half."

Saenz wasn't alone in helping San Diego. She said it's a group effort. J-Rod's drive-thru stepped up to donate food and water. A couple gave blankets for Saenz to distribute. Another woman, Gloria Gonzalez, donated $400 to Saenz to give to people that need some emergency gas.

"Just do something out of the kindness of your heart," said Saenz. "Get out there because in a situation like this sir, there is no politics, there is no church and there is no color. We are all in the same boat. And we all are brothers and sisters in the eyes of God. We need to help each other."

The Freer Civic Center opened up on Tuesday as a warming center. Saenz says contact her (361-562-1158) and she can get you there for free. Or you can contact the sheriff's office and they said they'll help as well.