Hurricane Matthew evacuees find shelter from storm in Macon

Many take shelter from Hurricane Matthew in Macon

MACON, GA.-- - Georgia may be out of Hurricane Matthew's path now, but many staying at local shelters say they are not going back home just yet.

Come Saturday afternoon, it was time to deflate the air mattresses about 100 Hurricane Matthew evacuees slept on Friday night and set up for Sunday's service at Grace Point Church on Gray Highway.

"The people that are in here. We've never met before. We may never see again. The fact of the matter is that we got out of our beds because we knew they may not have a bed. Even going home, they don't know what the hurricane has done,” said Grace Point Church Pastor Caleb Newberry.

Or who the hurricane has affected. Larhonda Moronta-Valenzuela and her unborn child made it through safe and sound, but they are hoping the same is true for her family in Savannah.
"I have family that did not leave at all, so I just want to go back and make sure they're okay,” said Moronta-Valenzuela.

Others are anxious to get home as well, but cannot even make it into their neighborhood.

"We can't go home because if we do go home, there's no lights. A lot of streets are flooded and everything like that, so we decided to stay,” said Savannah evacuee Beverly Edwards.

At the North Macon Park shelter, Red Cross workers are taking care of hundreds of evacuees grateful to have somewhere to sleep for the night.

“It's just an experience I'll never forget,” said Beaufort, South Carolina, evacuee Glenn Watson.

Watson says it took him and his family 11 hours to make it to Macon, but they say it is best to sit tight for now.

"I would advise that you stay where you're at until you're given the signal to you know come back,” said Watson.

To others, the hurricane was a signal to them of how precious life can be.

"We're not worried about material things you know. We're just thanking God for life itself and just giving us enough knowledge and sense to get out,” said Edwards.

They had enough sense to hold off on returning home until the coast from Florida to the Carolinas is clear.

Right now I-16 is closed Eastbound from exit 116 to Savannah. The farthest you can get right now is to Statesboro.


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