Madison County volunteer nurse heads to Baton Rouge to care for victims of Harvey

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Watching the devastation on TV pales in comparison to the heartbreak felt on the ground in Louisiana and Texas. Thank God for people like Mary Steece who is a hero in the midst of Harvey.

Steece is a volunteer nurse with the local chapter of the American Red Cross who is serving in Baton Rouge as of Wednesday. This isn't the first time she has put herself in harm's way. She went south for Hurricane Katrina and flooding events in several other states.

"I had 10 dialysis patients that I had to find a dialysis center to take these patients, and I did," Steece recalled of a past mission. "Thank God I did."

Steece describes horrible conditions victims have survived.

"Flood waters are so dirty," Steece said. "Just ask the people in New Orleans. They're so dirty. There's everything in those flood waters."

And, whatever is in the water is scary too.

"People, after a couple days of being in the water, have some of the most horrific wounds that I've seen," Reece said.

We know many people leave with only the clothes on their back, but you might not realize what they are living without.

"They have have lost their teeth, they may have lost their hearing aid," Steece said.

Once Steece hits the ground, it's all hands on deck. She will help with any medical needs, care for first responders and keep documentation of each victim she sees.

"You never abandon a patient, or a client, but you're always keeping you eyes out for any other situations that may arise." Steece said.

Steece said the medical help keeps eyes and ears out for dementia patients and others who need mental healthcare. She said nothing is hands off when you're helping on the front lines.