As Hurricane Ike approached on the evening of Sept. 12, Bear Branch homeowners were preparing for the worst. At that time, John C. Powers was cutting tree limbs on the family property when he fell from a tree, sustaining a severe head injury. “When he screamed, neighbors came at once to help him, but by that time he was unconscious,” said his wife Michelle. “They took the kids so I could go with John to Ben Taub in an ambulance.” She said her husband remained in a coma throughout the storm and afterwards, as family and friends waited for a report on his brain surgery. Powers was a volunteer firefighter during Hurricane Alicia. Photo: Michelle Powers, right, helps her children Emily and John Jr. fill the car with storm supplies before leaving to revisit her husband in a Houston hospital ICU. Photo by Mary Kelly Bumbaugh

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