AUSTIN, Texas - If you drive down one neighborhood in South Austin, you'll find multiple homes have the same flag hanging from its porch. These homes didn't always have this certain flag on display, but it started because of theft.
Tessa Flores and her wife have lived in this neighborhood for almost two years. They were the ones to put up the Pride flag first.
“We originally put up the flag during pride month just because we wanted to, show support, be ourselves, and we got some really great reception from the neighborhood,” said Flores.
The couple had the Pride flag up for about a month and a half before it was stolen right off their porch in the middle of the day.
“A lot of things were going through my mind. I wasn't sure if it was a hate crime or if, you know, maybe it were just some kids that were bored with quarantine, but I mean, it didn't make me feel good. Nobody wants to think that one of your neighbors is, you know, maybe prejudiced against you,” said Flores.
The theft was captured all on camera. The couple decided to share it on their neighborhood Facebook page to get the flag back and find out who it was.
“I threw the Nest footage of the person out on the group and, at first, we just wanted our flag back so I just asked if anybody knows who that person is. If they have any information if they could just let me know, ask them if they could just return our flag. That was really all we wanted at that point. Just, you know, give us our flag back,” said Flores.
She says they didn’t get the response they hoped for, but the response they did get from their neighbors was unexpected.
“We got amazing support from everybody. It was pretty cool. One of our neighbors actually organized a delivery of 20 flags into the neighborhood and had a signup sheet and then on top of that, other neighbors just started ordering flags as well,” said Flores.
In a matter of days, Flores said their neighborhood was covered in Pride flags.
“At first, it was overwhelming, but in a really positive way. For us to have that rally of support was just really cool. It was a really warm feeling to just have all of this love and kindness surrounding us,” she said.
A neighbor even gifted her and her wife a new flag which they now have proudly displayed. Flores says although the thief hasn't been identified, the two are thankful for what happened.
“Thanks for bringing the community together and the neighborhood together in a way that it wouldn't have been without that happening,” said Flores.