Employee paddleboards to car to get to work

Michael Lerner, who works at Moody Bank in Galveston’s downtown, had to paddle-board out of his Jamaica Beach neighborhood Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020, to get to work. Tidal flooding from Tropical Storm Beta has inundated bayside neighborhoods and roads on the West End of Galveston.

GALVESTON

This gives new meaning to the phrase “come hell or high water.”

As an 18-year resident of Jamaica Beach, Michael Lerner is no stranger to the rains and storm surge that sometimes make the roads into his neighborhood impassable, he said.

On Monday, when Tropical Storm Beta brought heavy rains, Lerner worked from his home, watching over his family, but knew he’d have to make it into the office at Moody National Bank on Tuesday to attend some important meetings, he said.

Lerner woke up early Tuesday, his car positioned strategically outside of the neighborhood, planning to walk through the flooded area — until he realized the water might be deep enough for his paddle board, he said.

“I put my suit and everything in a bag, got my shorts on and paddle-boarded across,” he said.

Paddling across the flooded area turned what would’ve been a 20-minute walk into a 5-minute paddle-board ride, Lerner estimated.

Tidal water filled low- lying areas of Galveston County even before heavy rains began Monday, and residents hunkered down as Tropical Storm Beta crawled up the Texas coast.

The water levels around his home on Tuesday morning were almost as high as they were during Hurricanes Laura and Harvey, Lerner said.

One of Lerner’s co-workers waited for him on the other side to take him the rest of the way to his car, and Lerner made it to work, where he changed from shorts and a T-shirt into work attire, he said.

Lerner in June was promoted to chief development officer with Moody Bank, officials said. He has worked for the bank for 18 years.

Talking from his office at Moody Bank on Tuesday, Lerner said he was glad to make it for the important meetings, he said.

“Getting home will be another adventure,” Lerner said.

Lerner joked that he might paddle by McDonald’s on his way home to grab Happy Meals for his children.

Matt deGrood: 409-683-5230; matt.degrood@galvnews.com

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(1) comment

Ron Shelby

Very Cool!!

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