Two Longview evacuees form friendship in shelter

Adversity sometimes brings out the best in people, and that is true in the case of two evacuees being sheltered in Longview.

KLTV 7's Bob Hallmark has the story of two women who have formed a friendship in the midst of leaving their homes from the threat of Ike.

Leaving behind everything she had and fearing the worst, 80 year old Winnie Penney found something in a Longview shelter she didn't expect - friendship.

Penney and 91 year old Laura Mae Smith have been fast friends since they arrived.

"She can't hear very good so we can't have too good of a conversation...she said she was alone and I said I was alone for 30 years."

Both had no family to go to, and knew no one when they arrived.

"My brothers and sisters, my mother and daddy are gone. I had no children."

But Penney noticed Smith looking lost at the shelter, and the rest took care of itself.

"She's so sweet, you just fall for her."

They watch out for each other, and are rarely separated. Penney thinks divine intervention lead to their meeting.

"Every man has a measure of failure, and I found out I had faith within me," said Penney.

Both have a seasoned sense of humor, and feel they have met to help each other through.

Whatever the future holds, their meeting has been worth it.

Miss Smith and Penney say they plan to keep their friendship going after they return home. Penney is from Dayton, and Smith is from Cleveland.

Bob Hallmark, Reporting