Florida couple resorts to Decatur

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DECATUR, Ill. (WAND) - After Hurricane Irma blew through parts of Florida, a Steinhatchee couple is settling in Decatur.

Rebecca Crom and Kayla Brinson left for Decatur a week ago. The typical 14 hour drive took 24 hours after they had to take back roads through Florida, Tennessee, and Mississippi. They packed as many clothes as they could fit in their car, important items like family heirlooms, and most importantly their three Pit Bulls.

Crom says, "I knew to leave. I knew I wasn't staying, it was scary." Brinson says, "Her mother passed away a year ago. She had a dream a few days before they told us to evacuate, she had a dream about her mother surrounded by water telling her to leave, and she didn't know what it was about, but when they told us we were under evacuation she got scared and of course I was scared too."

Crom is originally from Decatur and has a brother that still lives in the city. She says her family is dealing with their lives and are helping as much as possible, but currently the couple is living in a hotel. They say they used every last bit of money they had to pay for two weeks in a hotel. Now, they hoping to start new jobs in town next week, so they can begin the process of getting settled. 

Brinson says all of her family still lives in Florida, but she is happy about starting her new life in Central Illinois.

They say just last year they were homeless with very little to their names. They had just gotten jobs and a house about a year before Irma came. Now, the couple has no idea what is left of the life they built. Brinson says, "Nobody can get down our dirt road to find out. We lived in a single wide surrounded by trees so the expectancy is not good."

Now, the women are looking for an apartment that accepts their sweet Pit Bulls, so they can move out of the hotel they are currently in.

Brinson says since they spent every last penny they had to cover two weeks stay at the hotel and one more tank of gas, they may have to live out of their truck, but she knows the dogs would not be able to do that. They are hoping to start their jobs as soon as possible to avoid that situation.

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