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South Mississippi after Katrina

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  • w_w_c_l
    Monday, September 12, 2005 Hello, friends. I don t know how closely you have been paying attention to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina but the destruction in
    Message 1 of 2 , Sep 12, 2005
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      Monday, September 12, 2005



      Hello, friends.

      I don't know how closely you have been paying attention to the
      aftermath of Hurricane Katrina but the destruction in south
      Mississippi is unimaginable. Basically everything within a half mile
      of the coastline is just gone, all the way across the state. The
      whole town of Pass Christian wiped out, Bay St. Louis mostly gone --
      two weeks later we still don't have any idea how many people are
      missing. Whole residential blocks in Gulfport and Biloxi are scoured
      down to the slabs, with the rubble of disintegrated houses washed
      inland across the homes in adjacent blocks. This thing was big.

      And the damage extends far inland from the coast. Powerlines were
      downed and trees toppled through roofs 200 miles north in Oktibbeha
      County. Meridian, Laurel and Hattiesburg all got smacked.
      Everything in Mississippi east of I-55 and south of I-20 -- houses,
      businesses, chicken farms, timber, phone and powerlines, cropland,
      communication towers, county roads -- the whole southern half of the
      state has been hit and hit hard. North of I-20 from Forest to
      Carthage there are trees across roadways, houses, fences, utility
      lines. Whole sections of lightpoles have been reduced to splintered
      posts. Some of the people in more remote areas may not have
      electricity for weeks if not months.

      While my immediate family -- several households -- escaped any
      serious damage, all of them have trees down and shingles blown off,
      and some may not have electricity for a while. We'll be fine because
      we all have each other, and our neighbors, and insurance and fish
      cookers and Coleman lanterns and generators and chain saws and
      shared "deepfreezes" and oases of comfort when we need them -- but
      there are lots and lots of folks down here who don't have all those
      things, or a roof over their heads, or food or water or
      transportation or money or even anywhere else to go. And these, the
      people of south Mississippi, are "my people" too.

      The long and short of this is that I'm heading back down there.
      Those folks need money and manpower, and not having the former I can
      at least contribute to the latter. They need my knowledge and skills
      and tools and labor. Everywhere you look down there there is
      something that needs doing and it's going to be that way for years.
      We have a big mess to clean up. We have to find people places to
      live. We're going to have to help each other out.

      So it looks like I'll be living in a cabin in south Mississippi
      within a week or two. I'm pretty much packed up and ready, but you
      sure can accumulate some "stuff" in fourteen years in the same
      place. Some of my friends, and the families of friends, and a bunch
      of people I don't even know lost all of their stuff. Where I'm going
      my internet access is going to be pretty spotty compared to what I'm
      used to, and it may be a while before I even have a phone line. For
      the time being I'm not going to have time to sit around and chat on
      the internet anyway. I'll check back when I can but for now, y'all
      take care; I've enjoyed it.

      Pray for us all down here, but also please contribute what you can to
      the Red Cross or the Salvation Army or any number of other groups
      that are down here helping out.

      Here are a couple of links.

      NOAA satellite images of the Gulf Coast:
      http://ngs.woc.noaa.gov/katrina/

      The Gulfport-Biloxi Sun-Herald:
      http://www.sunherald.com/mld/sunherald/


      Rick Hartzog

      Worldwide Church of Latitudinarianism
    • rlbaty@webtv.net
      Rick, We were wondering what had become of you. Thanks for that report. As time and access allows, keep us advised of the progress from your eyewitness
      Message 2 of 2 , Sep 12, 2005
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        Rick,

        We were wondering what had become of you.

        Thanks for that report. As time and access allows, keep us advised of
        the progress from your eyewitness vantage point.

        Sincerely,
        Robert Baty
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