Petal man rescued victims of Harvey

Petal man rescued victims of Harvey

PETAL, MS (WDAM) - A Petal man is on his way home after taking his own boat to Texas to rescue people from their flooded homes.

Frank Mariano said he spent three days in Port Arthur, Texas saving 100 or more people from flood waters. He took his 19 1/2 foot bay boat that holds seven people, but he managed to get 13 to 17 people inside the boat each trip.

He said his main concern was the people's safety and doing what he could to make things better for them.

"I kept spirits light on the boat," Mariano said. "I made them laugh, told them they would be laughing about this in a year's time. You know, it was actually a pretty good feeling. Once you got them in the boat and made them feel at ease and let them know they were in good hands, and let them know they were going to a safe place, their spirits lighten up."

Mariano said Harvey victims need food, water and more help. He said he was asked to leave by emergency officials because the flood waters were rising and becoming too dangerous for smaller boats like his.