MIAMI (CBSMiami) — It was a moment of distraction from devastation and destruction that surrounds people in the lower Florida Keys.
Former Florida Gators QB Tim Tebow paid a visit along with Senator Marco Rubio as a show of moral support to those recovering from Hurricane Irma.
“There are a lot of heroes in this state right now and it’s pretty cool,” said Tebow, now a minor league baseball player for the New York Mets.
It was also a moment to thank volunteers who are taking care of those trying to clean up and rebuild their lives.
“You literally see nurses or volunteers holding peoples’ hands, caring for them and you know we can’t repair everything in a day. You probably can’t do it for a little while but you can let people know they’re cared for, they’re prayed for and they’re not in this journey alone,” said Tebow.
For many in the lower keys, the gesture is appreciated.
“I got the kids up early said, ‘Let’s do some work and then we can take a break and go see,’ so it is definitely a distraction, a good distraction to get us out,” said Dawn Vincent who lives in the lower keys.
While in the lower Keys, Senator Rubio is also calling attention to what will happen to the area as it rebuilds.
“This land is valuable land and if the person who owns it decides to turn it into just a bunch of expensive town houses then where do the people who work here go to live? That was already a problem, now imagine after the storm,” said Senator Rubio.
Senator Rubio echoes the concerns of many. The storm hit hard right in the area where members of the service industry live. The fear is they could be priced out of the recovery, hurting tourism and the economy.
Rubio says FEMA trailers will be sent for temporary housing.
CBS4’s Ted Scouten asked, “How much of a done deal is it to get those trailers rolling in here?”
“Well, it’s happening, the question is logistically getting them here and being able to support them. If you can’t hook it up to power, they won’t function. We’re getting there, probably slower than people want it to,” answered Rubio.
Senator Rubio said he’s also talking with trailer manufacturers about getting them to send RV’s directly here to house members of the service industry.