houstonchronicle.com
Astros await refugee's first pitch in a new country
Dayana Halawo was nine months pregnant when Syrian planes started bombing her neighborhood in 2012. As the nation's brutal civil war raged into its second year, government forces began carrying out a major military offensive in Homs, a key opposition stronghold at the time. The central Syrian city, home to thousands of civilians, including Halawo, her husband Mohamed and 1-year-old son, abruptly transformed into a war zone. Halawo was sitting in her fourth-floor apartment when the building next door was decimated by an aerial bomb. The expectant mother and her family hurried downstairs and fled, suspecting correctly that their building would crumble next. "I was so scared about my kids," Halawo said.