Sunday, November 06, 2005

Hurricane Katrina-Views from the Gulf Coast

Yesterday I went to Pascagoula, Mississippi, on a mission trip with members of my local church. We went down to put insulation and sheetrock up in two houses that were damaged by hurricane Katrina.

The owners at the house where I worked had left before the storm and returned to find that their house had extensive water damage and everything in it was destroyed. They had lived there for 40 years. They slept on the floor of their home for seven weeks before they received a trailer from FEMA. While we were there one of their neighbors came over and told them proudly he had just gotten a trailer to stay in. They live about a 1/4 mile from the shoreline. Some houses on their street were completely destroyed.

The extent of the damage on the Gulf Coast is hard to imagine. I spent some time fishing on the Mississippi coast in June and everywhere I had visited during that trip was destroyed. We fished from Pascagoula to Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. Ironicly we went to Bay St. Louis to get away from a tropical depression that came ashore while we were there. Everywhere we had gone was destroyed by Katrina including the bridge in Biloxi we fished from and the railroad bridge in the backgound. The shrimp boats and other vessels were waiting to go up into the bay because the railroad bridge has a section that swings around to let larger boats through.

I also took my boat to New Orleans the day after Labor Day to help with the rescue efforts there. I was only able to stay one day but I was able to help. Along with a New Orleans police officer I went out and searched for people who were still traped in their homes by the flood. The extent of the destruction there was also unbelievable. The picture on the left is looking down Canal Street with my truck and boat in the foreground. The picture on the right is the neighborhood where we searched.

No comments: