Beryl damages Baytown synagogue as most of Houston still without power
Congregation K’Nesseth Israel in Baytown sustained major damage to the facade
of its 94-year-old building from Hurricane Beryl July 8, 2024. Photo: Courtesy

By Matt Samuels
Jewish Herald Voice
July 9. 2024

Many Houston synagogues and Jewish organizations were still without power Tuesday morning after Hurricane Beryl stormed through the city early Monday morning, July 8.

There was no major damage reported to any synagogues in Houston, but more than 1 million people in Houston remained without electricity as of Tuesday morning.

Congregation K’Nesseth Israel in Baytown, however, sustained major damage to the facade of its 94-year-old building.

“We were devastated to see what happened to our beloved shul, but grateful nobody was hurt,” K’Nesseth Israel president Joan Linares told the JHV.

K’Nesseth Israel was recently listed on the National Register of Historic Places and was planning a celebration in the fall.

“We will seek professionals to help assess the damage and our hope is to restore the synagogue,” Linares said.

“If people wish to donate they may do so through Zelle. Our account is Congregation KNesseth Israel and the associated email address is ckibaytown@gmail.com.”

Overall, eight people are dead and more than two million Texas customers are without power after Beryl made the first U.S. landfall of the 2024 hurricane season.

Houston Mayor John Whitmire signed a disaster declaration for the City of Houston to help expedite financial resources for repairs and help Houstonians get back on their feet.

CenterPoint expects to have 1 million impacted customers restored by the end of the day on Wednesday, July 10, the company said in a press release Monday evening.

Houston Public Works said the city’s drinking water is safe and meets all state and federal regulatory pressure requirements.

Meanwhile, many Houston residents took to the streets with rakes and chainsaws Monday afternoon to start the cleanup process, which included downed trees, fences and more.

“The rebuild is going to be significant. There was real damage, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz said during a Monday evening news conference. “But the good news is for Houston, this ain’t our first rodeo.”

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