Katrina survivors’ ‘Twist’ of fate

CW39
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THE WOODLANDS, TX – There are a lot of ugly pictures associated with Hurricane Katrina. Algy and Kermie Irvin, owners of ‘Painting with a Twist’ in The Woodlands, paint one of survival and rebirth. Algy, a free-lance photographer and Kermie, an engineer, were married and living in New Orleans when the storm roared ashore ten years ago.

“Katrina came along in august and destroyed everything that we had, business was totally wiped out,” said Algy Irvin, Jr.

“We stayed there for a year and after that it was just the stresses of going through everything and not being able to start the rebuilding process, just became overwhelming,” said Kermie Irvin.

So, like many survivors, they headed to Houston for a fresh start. They filled their blank canvas with a new business venture.

“Starting our business in 2009 in the middle of a recession–everybody thought we were a little bit crazy,” said Kermie, “we were like, you know, we went through Katrina.”

Their perseverance paid off, and now they take pride in helping others unwind, with the help of glass of wine, of course!

“Being able to bring a little bit of New Orleans flavor to everyone with the painting, the socializing, it’s just been phenomenal,” said Algy, “Ten years later to see how far we’ve come has been truly amazing.”

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