Beyoncé came home, grabbed a mic, and got stage in Midtown. Instead of singing, she surprised storm victims with a gift they’ll never forget.
People in traffic showered Beyoncé with cheers ending her emotional visit with 400 people who lost homes to Harvey.
Beyoncé was seen landing at Hobby Airport before arriving at St. John's United Methodist Church downtown, the singer's home church. Her daughter, Blue Ivy, and mother, Tina Knowles Lawson, were by her side.
The Houston native delivered an emotional message to the crowd. Joey Guerra with the Houston Chronicle shared video of the event on his Facebook page.
"Houston is my home," said Beyoncé. "The the thing that really matters is your health and your children and your family and you've got it, and I just want to say I love you."
Facebook video showed her being seated in the church along with Blue Ivy while performers took the stage with songs of praise.
Her foundation, BeyGOOD Houston, was at the church feeding survivors and first responders. Instagram photos also showed her former group member, Michelle Williams and her mother serving food to Harvey victims.
“I’m kind of speechless on that one,” Gary Matthews, a storm victim, said. “I’m very grateful, very grateful.”
Just days ago, Matthews saw chest deep water break open locked doors to his home near Greens Bayou. With his wife, brother and dog, the Fonwood pre-K teacher spent the night on his roof waiting for help. On Twitter, friends rallied.
“He was stranded,” said Flora Henoy-Smith, who teaches with Matthews at Fonwood Early Childhood Center. “No one knew and (Matthews’ cell phone) batteries were running low. So we all just pulled together.”
Beyoncé’s BeyGOOD group heard his story, countless others and teamed with the Bread of Life, St. John’s and others to collect donations and host a lunch.
The singer and her mom hugged survivors and posed for photos.
Twelve-year-old Max White was thrilled to get a selfie with her.
"She smells nice," Max said. "When Beyonce tells you how to take a selfie, it's a good day!"
Some there snapped selfies. However, storm victims given free Nikes took home so much more.
“It’s a blessing to see that we have shoes to put on our feet after all of the things we’ve been through to keep on walking,” Henoy-Smith said.
Beyoncé launched BeyGOOD in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. The organization teamed up with Bread of Life and Greater Houston Community Foundation, who have been working with the displaced from the start of Hurricane Harvey's landfall.
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