Texans’ Justin Reid: ‘This hit close to home for me’

It was an emotional time for Texans safety Justin Reid as he worried about his relatives in Louisiana while watching the destruction wrought by Hurricane Ida.

A native of Ascension Parish, Reid wanted to get involved to do something to provide relief to his home state.

So, he and his camp quickly organized a massive relief drive in the Green Lot of NRG Stadium as they partnered with the Texans to obtain donations and supplies to give to churches in Louisiana. The Texans gave ticket vouchers to their home opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars, and TDECU gave a $5,000 donation with Reid raising just over $10,000 in monetary donations.

Reid received donations to fill two 18-wheelers to transport the donations to True Light Baptist Church in Baton Rouge that arrived Saturday morning to have the items sorted and prepared for distribution to the community.

“I know some of those streets, I know some of those areas, and to see some of the damage, it hit close to home for me,” Reid said. “I want to find a way to help. I know I can always rely on the organization here and Houstonians. I wanted to take a leap of faith. It’s been really cool to have this drive. We partnered with over 100 churches. 

"This is all going to go to churches in Louisiana and rely on them to distribute. It’s going to do a lot of good in the community. This hit close to home for me. New Orleans, I have family there. Some of them are living with me to get away from the severe weather. I feel for the people who are going through hardships in New Orleans. It hit close to home for me. It means a lot to me.”

Reid was joined by several teammates at the relief drive as Whitney Mercilus, Lonnie Johnson Jr., Jeff Driskel, Derek Rivers and Max Scharping pitched in to help out. Retired Texans offensive lineman Chester Pitts provided a U-Haul truck filled with supplies, and Mayor Sylvester Turner stopped by to support an event organized by Reid and his publicist, Tamara Washington with DJ Big Reeks supplying the music.

“It’s a really good feeling to see Houston come out and show support,” Reid said. “We know firsthand what it’s like to go through hurricanes. To be able to go out and show some support to my Louisiana community, it means a tremendous amount to me and I can’t thank them enough for that. A whole lot of work went into this in a very short time.”

Aaron Wilson has covered the NFL for 20 years and has previously written for The Houston Chronicle and The Baltimore Sun. He’s on Twitter: @AaronWilson_NFL and Instagram: @aaronwilson7128

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