Gov. Bill Clements said he will seek disaster aid to help residents of San Antonio recover from damage caused by high winds and tornadoes spawned by Hurricane Gilbert.
Clements, who has declared Cameron County a disaster area, went on a tour Monday of Brownsville, the county seat and Texas' southernmost city, and then stopped in San Antonio to view areas hit by tornadoes over the weekend."All of us feel a sense of relief there was not more damage," Clements said in Brownsville.
Clements was told that Rio Grande Valley growers might not know for at least another month the extent of damage to the region's citrus crops. While little fruit was knocked from trees, growers feared any bruising might lessen the crop's value.
San Antonio Mayor Henry Cisneros said he would maintain a local emergency declaration made Saturday to keep residents and businesses eligible for state or federal funds, although the city had not made the request for outside aid.
"I believe you're hurt worse here than anyplace else," Clements told San Antonio officials, adding that he would recommend the city receive federal aid.
San Antonio, which sheltered thousands of people who fled the Texas Gulf Coast and Rio Grande Valley in advance of Gilbert, bore the brunt of the storm's aftermath as nine tornadoes striking Saturday killed one woman and caused tens of millions of dollars in damage to homes, hospitals and Kelly Air Force Base. At its peak, Gilbert was the strongest Atlantic hurricane on record.
A funeral was scheduled Wednesday for Emily Dickens, 59, who died of multiple injuries when she was tossed 100 feet through the air into a woodpile after a tornado ripped apart her mobile home 20 miles south of San Antonio Saturday.
Two other people were killed elsewhere in the state. Gilbert spawned 65 tornadoes throughout Texas and wrecked hundreds of houses and apartments, causing mostly minor injuries to at least 11 people.