HOUSTON - A dry cleaners in Meyerland is back open after suffering major flood damage from Hurricane Harvey and now the business is working hard to help locals wash out the stink in their clothes from floodwaters.
For nearly 30 years, the machines have churned out crisp, fresh clothes at Wholesale Cleaners and the water in Brays Bayou had never come even close, until Hurricane Harvey.
"This area was always dry, but this time it was really different," said owner Michael Kaufman.
Kaufman watched the water rise and rush into his store on remote surveillance cameras. Nearly a foot of water came inside by the time it was over.
"This time it affected me, even as I talk now, I'm getting emotional, it's hard. You lose everything," said Kaufman.
All over Meyerland you see the same thing over and over again. If you didn't lose anything, you know someone who did. Half of his workers were living in shelters. Even Kaufman lost his home.
"Everybody's emotional, they've been hit, it's hard," said Kaufman.
He was committed to not losing his business too.
"I don't sleep at night thinking how to put the business back, thinking about people that work with me," said Kaufman. "We're like a family. I depend on them. They depend on me."
Now the machines are back up and running, still cleaning clothes families somehow salvaged from Harvey.
"After the storm we were swamped with big loads of clothing, wet stinky clothes, you have to wash them right away," Kaufman said.
It's therapeutic work for a man trying to do his part to wash away Harvey's stink and the nightmares the storm left behind.
"I'm worried how the future will be, how Houston will be six months, or a year from now, if this area will be back again," said Kaufman.