Frigid cold, snow in Midwest, South affects some community members families

Sophomore and other Convent families affected by snow storm


Barb Darr

Ethics & Morality teacher Clint Hackenberg’s front porch of his family home in Ohio is covered by 6 ft snow. Extreme cold weather caused power to go out, leaving homes without heat and causing pipes to burst.

Nicole Klein, Reporter

WEB EXCLUSIVE Sophomore Sophia Wu’s five-day trip to Texas with her family for a holiday visit took an unexpected turn when a rare freeze caused them to go without electricity for two days. 

The unusual cold weather in the South and Midwest has affected thousands of families, with 47 people dying in Texas, leaving 350,000 homes without electricity, and bursting water pipes due to the extreme temperature. 

“I have grandparents in Houston, and we thought it would be nice to spend some time with them for Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day,” Wu said. “We had no electricity for two days, but it just came back yesterday. We were lucky enough to have water, but it was really cold, so we had to bundle up as much as we could and use the sunlight to our full advantage.” 

Other Convent families have been affected by the unusual snowfall in Texas. Days-long power outages and icy roads are a new obstacle for Texans. 

“My grandparents and uncle who both live in Dallas don’t have any power right now and they’ve been freezing for a couple of days,” sophomore Amaliya Syput said. “My uncle has to go to work, so he’s been living at his office since it’s warmer than staying at his house.” 

Ethics & Morality teacher Clint Hackenberg, who grew up in Ohio, says he has never experienced this harsh of a snowfall. The thickness of the snow piles is not allowing for heat to be absorbed in order to melt it, according to NASA.

“This happens every once in a while in Ohio, but usually when we get blasts of a big snowstorm it eventually melts,” Hackenberg said. “This year the ground keeps collecting more and more layers of snow and won’t melt down.”

Many Texan families have had their mail delayed due to dangerous snow conditions on roads, according to the United States Postal Service, affecting Sypult’s friends who live in San Antonio. 

“My friends have lost their power and haven’t been receiving their mail for a couple of weeks,” said Sypult. “All of the roads near their house have been covered in ice.”

Students have not been able to attend school, and many families have had to care for elderly parents and grandparents. 

“My niece and nephew, who are both in high school in Ohio, have had a lot of school canceled even on top of COVID,” Hackenberg said. “Since they live in rural areas, they can’t get to school because of the snow. My grandma has been very sick and is under 24 hour watch. It’s been hard for my relatives to visit her since there’s 6 feet of snow.”

Wu says her family is thankful they were able to be with their grandparents during the harsh weather.  Wu says they plan to return to San Francisco on Saturday as the majority of snow has melted in her area. 

“I think that it was just a relief that we were down here when this all happened to take care of my grandparents,” Wu said.

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