Hurricane Ike Evacuee On the Brink of Death in Odessa

By Wyatt Goolsby
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - Trapped in West Texas and on the brink of death, a Houston Ike evacuee said he's in big trouble and doesn't know what to do to save his life.

"There is nothing I can do. I mean, I have my hands tied," Ricky Vincent, a Port Authur evacuee staying in Odessa, said.

Vincent needs to get out of town. His doctors said if he doesn't get back to Beaumont for medical treatment, he could die within two months.

"We have no way of taking him back or anything," Donna Vasquez, Vincent's neighbor and fellow evacuee, said.

Vincent suffers from several medical conditions, including lung cancer. He and his neighbors came to Odessa seeking shelter from Hurricane Ike's path. However, with no money and no means to get back to Port Arthur, they don't know what to do next.

"We called FEMA, and you can't get through," Vasquez explained. "We went on the internet, and they said there wasn't anything they could do at this point."

So far, the Vasquez couple and Ricky Vincent together have received free clothes and food from the Salvation Army and the West Texas Food Bank.  But even with free meals at Jaliscos' restrauant, it's still not enough.

"I need to get back there, because they've only given me two months to live," Vincent said.

His biggest fear is dying alone, and far away from his family.

"It hurts so bad not being with my son and my daughter. My daugther is crying, she is constantly crying, and my son, don't know what to say," Vincent explained.

"I'm just going to have faith in God that everything will be alright," Vasquez added.

On Friday, Ricky Vincent and the Vasquezs are still trying to get help from FEMA. When they evacuated, they missed the last bus, which means they are not with the rest of the evacuees. 

It's just another problem for a group just trying to help their neighbor.