Katy Responds Reveals “New” Home to 22-Year-Old and Younger Brother

Katy Responds Reveals “New” Home to 22-Year-Old and Younger Brother

Jaylan and Julian Gray.

The Katy area non-profit restores home following destruction left by Harvey and winter freeze, after heartbreaking life changes

Katy Responds, the area non-profit that restores homes for Katy residents in need after natural disasters, welcomed brothers Jaylan (22) and Julian (11) back to their newly renovated home on Friday, August 12th. The renovation was a 3-month collaboration in which several local businesses and community volunteers stepped in to save the home. After completion, Lakewood Church furnished the home.

Jaylan was attending college at the time of his stepfather’s unexpected death. Like many young men, he postponed his education to help take the financial strain off his mother. As fate would have it, tragedy hit the family again when Jaylan and Julian’s mother became ill with a rare blood disease. Before she died, Jaylan promised he’d take good care of his young brother.

“I try my best to keep him on the right track, and make sure he doesn’t get into trouble. Most of all, I make sure Julian knows he’s loved,” said Jaylan.

Katy Responds Reveals “New” Home to 22-Year-Old and Younger Brother

Volunteers Diana Carroll, Dave Paddock and Robin Pack.

Following structural damages due to Hurricane Harvey, and the result of bursting water pipes during the winter freeze and ensuing power outages in February last year, the home in which Jaylan suddenly became head of the household, sustained additional damage. With the monies that were available, a contractor was hired. The shady contractor took the money, but failed to do the work. Unable to repair the home, Jaylan and Julian were taken in by their grandparents. Shortly after moving in, the grandfather died.

“I had so much weight on me emotionally,” said Jaylan. “Knowing I didn’t have the finances to repair our home, I was just done and ready to sell it. It was too much.”

Katy Responds learned of Jaylan and Julian’s situation, and knew if there was ever a need for them to step in and help, this was it.

“There’s just no way anyone could have lived in a house in that condition, and probably would have never repaired it,” said Ron Peters, executive director of Katy Responds. “With the support of countless volunteers and partners, we were able to repair the home and provide a safe place for Jaylan and Julian to live, so they can move forward, together.”

“It makes me so happy to see that there are so many good people in the Katy community. I just like the way we’ve been treated. I didn’t think anything good would ever happen again,” said younger brother Julian.

Katy Responds Reveals “New” Home to 22-Year-Old and Younger Brother

The kitchen after renovation.

About Katy Responds

Katy Responds, a 501(c)3, non-profit organization that was created in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in 2017, helps families rebuild their homes after disaster. Katy Responds relies on the financial generosity of communities, churches, and other organizations to continue its mission. To date, the organization has restored over 160 homes, with many more on the waiting list. Your giving helps to provide a beautiful, safe home for families in need. To learn more or donate, visit www.katyresponds.org.

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