It was business in usual on a December day in downtown Conroe, but for the wary there was an extra burden - knowledge that a really bad flu has emerged in the area which can quickly claim a life.
"It's very scary. It scares me and we try to stay home. Since this has happened we haven't really gone out anywhere because anybody could be carrying it," said Shea Cullens, a Montgomery County resident.
So far four have died at Conroe Regional Medical Center. Five other seriously ill patients remain, two now confirmed to have contracted H1N1, also known as swine flu. The latest diagnosis came earlier today.
Meantime, the Montgomery County Health District is advising all who can to get this season's version of the flu vaccine.
Shawn and Shannon Nelson will be serving more than 1,000 less fortunate folks this weekend at the East Texas Dream Center. They figure an inoculation at their local Walgreens might minimize the risk of exposure.
"We are people of faith so I believe that God has his hand of protection on us, but
he gives us wisdom as well so we just want to take the precautions we need to protect ourselves," said Shawn Nelson.
" We want to protect our family and friends and the women and children in need," said Shannon Nelson.
Yvonne Cullens is a friend of one of the patients diagnosed with H1N1 and is worried most about her own grandchildren.
She's calling on the community to be pro-active in the face of a clear and present danger.
"Get out there and tell someone. Don't let it be silent because silence can be deadly," said Cullens.
Montgomery County health leaders are waiting for results of advanced testing to return from the Centers For Disease Control.
Montgomery County Medical Director Dr. Mark Escott said an afternoon conference involving multiple health leaders identified several cases of H1N1 flu throughout the region.