New Orleans Two Years After Katrina

Where were you two years ago when one of the most horrific events of my state and nation happened? Where were you when the levees crashed in New Orleans as a result of Hurricane Katrina making it’s home in the Gulf of Mexico? Construction work continues at the control structure at the 17th Street Canal in New Orleans, Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2007. If the Army Corps of Engineers has its way, and billions in federal funds don't get siphoned off by war or another natural disaster, those who remain in New Orleans should be better protected from flooding by 2015. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) AP Photo

I remember being glued to the TV because I had friends stuck in New Orleans.  I remember trying to reach those friends, but the phone lines, including cell phones were down. In fact, at that time my cell phone number was a 504 number so no one could reach me unless they sent me a text message. 

I could remember waiting by the phone, waiting and waiting to hear from loved ones hoping they got out in time or if they didn’t get out, they were on higher ground.  I can remember the joy I felt when my friend Kev sent me a text message to alert me he was safe in Baton Rouge at a relatives house. The only downside was he hadn’t heard from his brother; so more prayers went up.

I can remember seeing the devastation as if the area that was flooded in New Orleans was a war zone. I can remember a TV reporter showing things in the water that looked like bodies floating.

I can remember the tears that wouldn’t stop falling as I saw my people, our people, suffering, thinking there was no hope because it seemed like our nation’s government had forgotten about them.

Do you remember where you were on that ill-fated day when the Levees broke? 


3 comments on “New Orleans Two Years After Katrina

  1. I was huddled up with my 2 year old and a storm TV/radio combo in the master bedroom closet of my Cordova, TN home. At the time I was a few months pregnant with twins and my husband had just began his job in Atlanta at GA State. I was scared.

    When the wind and rain cleared, my home was the only one on my street not damaged. We did not suffer power loss but I could not reach my mother, dad, aunts and uncles who lived less than 3 hours away in MS. I could not reach my cousin who lived in Hattiesburg, MS.

    A day after the storm, with baby in tow, I drove to my mother’s house to find no electricity. Since she is a nurse she was staying at the local hospital to help those suffering from the storm.

    While New Orleans have become the face of Katrina, many other areas were severely damaged. ALL of them are still in need of our prayers and resources.

    Thanks for posting this Shelia!

  2. I was prepping for my last few days in working in the Federal Gov’t. I was on edge already because a dear frined of mine, who is originally fron New Orleans, still had family there. They were residents of the ninth ward. When the hurricane touched down, I called her every so often t make sure she was okay. Even though she was living in Atlanta at the time, I know she was worried about her father, uncle, and some cousins. I called her to see if she recieved any word from her dad.

    At the time, her family was fine. They were one of the many families that decided to weigh out the storm. They were troopers.

    Then.. the levees broke.

    I kept in touch with my friend. At one point she had heard from her father. He was headed to the superdome. After that conversation, it would have been a mere two to three weeks when she would hear from ehr father again.

    I felt bad. I worried for my friend. I wanted to be in Atlanta comforting her. There wasn’t much I could do being in DC. Well, there were two things I did. 1) By the second week, her worry was turning into a mournful sadness. She didn’t know if her family was dead or alive. She was tempted to jump in her her truck and drive to New Orleans, but she knew that wouldn’t do much good if the city was flooded and in a civil unrest like it was. She was a bit low on funds and I wired her money. I wired her more than what she was expecting and told her to treat herself to the gospel concert she wanted to attend at the time. I wanted to help her shift her mind to some rejuvenation as much as possible. Even if it was only for an hour.

    The second thing I wanted to do.. when I heard that some of the victims were going to be flown into DC and housed at the DC Amory, I had planned to run to my father, a retiree of the DC National Gaurd, to see if he could use his contacts to help me locate my friend’s family… in case they made it here.

    Thankfully, just before I was setting the wheels in motion to do so, my friend called me.

    “He’s Safe!”

    Her father and his wife had made it to Arkansas. However, her cousins and (I think) uncle were in Dallas.

    Needless to say, when she was able to return home.. her phsycial home was gone. Nothing was left. Yet, like so many other residents, she is still proud and edidcated to calling New Orleans her home.

    Currently she is living in Miami and still returns home for Mardi Gras and other festivals. Her family stayed in Arkansas.

  3. Makasha & Tiffany, I got teary-eyed reading your comments. The memory from that time is fresh on my brain. Thank you both for sharing your experience. Let’s pray that we won’t ever have to experience anything like it again.

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