GoFundMe set up for Caddo volunteer injured at site

by By Cristin Parker cristin@thecherokeean.com

Last weekend’s tornadoes that swept through the city of Alto devastated the town’s crown jewel attraction, the Caddo Mounds State Historic Site – in more ways than one.

Victor Galan, archeologist, vice-president of the Friends of Caddo Mounds volunteer organization, and husband of assistant site supervisor, Rachel Galan, was critically injured when the Caddo Mounds State Historic Site took a direct hit from a tornado on Saturday, April 13. Family members report he sustained injuries to his neck and spine.

I’m shattered, thankful, hopeful, speechless,” Rachel Galan stated in a social media post shared three days after the storm. “Know that Victor and I feel all the love, warmth, healing energy and prayers coming from near and far. There were small victories yesterday -- a little more feeling in arms and right foot, breathing on his own, a smile, some shoulder shrugs to a pretty awesome playlist (Galan’s family members) worked on.

“I am working very hard to keep my thoughts small, my focus narrow. Grateful that Victor can hear me when I tell him I love him, that he can feel me rub his face and shoulders.

“For all else, I have no words, except thank you to all our family, friends, and community. All the support and love we’ve received we are sending back out to all those still recovering, working to make sense out of disaster, cleaning up and caring for those impacted, our Caddo community, brave strangers, our neighbors in the flats, Stephen F. Austin State University, the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas, and so many more.”

The Galans’ daughter Miriam also posted, “Saturday was very hard for me and my family. As my father was trying to help people take cover in the museum the tornado swept through causing the building to collapse and cause head and neck injuries to my dad. He was life flighted to the hospital on Conroe and went under major surgery.

“I am very hopeful for the future and I truly believe he will recover. I just wanted to post and say I’m so thankful for all the love and support we’ve gotten, so many have been so considerate.

“My father is a great man. He is one of the most caring and considerate people I’ve ever known. He’s always been there for his family and has always worked hard to create a great life for us. I’m looking forward to his recovery.”

The East Texas Cultural Alliance (ETCA) has established a GoFundMe account on behalf of Victor and Rachel Galan. To donate, visit www.gofundme.com.caddomoundsvicandrachel. “Those who know Victor and Rachel have been touched by their kindness and generosity,” the ETCA stated on the fund’s page. “They are dedicated to their family, their friends, and their careers.

“Together, they have worked to help artists, writers, brewers, musicians, craftsmen, and educators of all kinds to create real connections and lasting change in our community.”

The East Texas Cultural Alliance provides collaborative support to volunteers and cultural professionals working in museums, historic sites, libraries, and parks across East Texas.