Residents of a flooded assisted living facility in Dickinson, Texas, were rescued Sunday, but not before a photo of them waist-deep in water emerged online.
The heart-wrenching picture making its rounds through social media depicts residents sitting and walking in several feet of filthy water while waiting for help.
Trudy Lampson, who owns the La Vita Bella facility, snapped the now-viral photo, according to CNN.
"My mom sent it to me at 9 this morning. She said it was a disaster," Lampson’s daughter, Kim McIntosh, reportedly said Sunday. "They [were] waiting for helicopters or the National Guard."
"Most of these people are in wheelchairs and [on] oxygen," she added.
According to McIntosh, her mother was told that the residents did not need to evacuate. They were instructed to stay put and have a disaster plan in place. However, when the storm hit, the water became waist-deep within 10 to 15 minutes after flowing through the doors.
When the situation became severe, Lampson reportedly reached out for a rescue but was told that first-responders would not be able to get to them.
"They were basically told no one was coming because they couldn't reach them," McIntosh said. "They might be put on a list, and that was it.”
"That's when we decided to go ahead and tweet the photos, because we were afraid she wasn't going to get any help," McIntosh added.
Eventually, the National Guard came in trucks to rescue the residents. All of them, including McIntosh’s mother, were relocated to another, dry assisted living facility.
The social media response to the photo ranged from expressions of heartbreak, to disbelief, to outrage.
We Spend trillions on war to kill and steal from other countries why can't we spend a few million to send more help for our own people?— Galanti (@ELBoriDomi) August 27, 2017
So sad— hey (@mariegrows) August 27, 2017
They're gonna get infections sitting in that mess. There has to be a better plan than that. That amazes me they let it get to here.— Wean Satson (@spwj92) August 27, 2017
It does seem quite unbelievably negligent. But updates show those old folks have been evacuated. I guess rescuers are just overwhelmed— WikiTerms (@WikiTerms) August 27, 2017
Everyone saying this is fake lacks empathy and compassion and part are the issues in the world thankfully the residents have been saved— pαstlífєpríєstєss🌿 (@Alienatedwitch_) August 27, 2017
Wtf!!! How is this happening in America?!?! What is the government doing besides tweeting and appearing on cable networks?!?!— Rimbello (@Rimbello) August 27, 2017
The devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey serve as a jarring reminder that Mother Nature, in all of her beauty and glory, can be quite merciless.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Reuters, Rick Wilking