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Thousands of evacuees are being housed in the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston, a safe haven for those who witnessed the unthinkable.

RELATED: Joel Osteen’s Houston megachurch will stay closed, even as people look for shelter

Many tell the same story: flood waters were being kept at bay, away from their homes one minute.

And in the next, they were inundated.

“It was a journey,” Claude Green, who lives in northeast Houston, said in an interview.

He continued by describing Saturday night’s light rain:

“But when we woke up, it was up to my chest.”

As the convention center braced for more people, it was reported Tuesday morning some 9,000 are there, many with similar tales of narrow escapes.

RELATED: Officials: If your house is flooding, go to the roof, not the attic

During another interview, northeast Houston resident, Shelia Opot, said she couldn’t believe how fast the water rose.

She thought her home was fine Saturday morning, and told worried family members the same when they called, concerned:

“But I had not gone downstairs. When I did, my place was flooded.”

The GRB is reportedly full at this time, but they are continuing to seek donations.  Buc-cee’s is also reportedly housing first responders, and Gallery Furniture said it will keep its doors open to all as long as it can.

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Mayor Turner promised shelter relief, with more places scheduled to be open around town today.

If you’d like to help, here’s the latest information on who to contact and where to donate.

Anna Caplan contributes to Rare Houston and Rare Animals. 
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