Dear governors, Our Katrina story

BILOXI — Empty lots graced by Live oaks sit along our shoreline.

Mile after mile for 75 miles it is the same. Hurricane Katrina claimed the waterfront mansions of the wealthy, poor neighborhoods, water parks, churches, condominiums, souvenir shops, restaurants, parks, town greens, entire communities, the hearts of Waveland and Bay St. Louis and so much more. None of the 11 municipalities and three counties on the Coast escaped damage.

We cried as we surveyed mountains of rubble on Aug. 30, 2005. Splintered pieces of our homes, our furniture, our memories, built those mountains. But we didn’t cry long for our material losses. We were grateful to be here.

In Mississippi, 167 people lost their lives. We cried for a woman who cared for the mentally handicapped during the storm, returning home to Pass Christian the next morning to find her husband and toddler dead. She wrapped her baby in a blanket and waited hours for help on her front porch while her husband’s body lay inside.

Sun Herald