Hurricane Katrina allowed me to view my extended family in a different way completely! I was aware a storm was coming, but having been a hard-headed local that has seen her share of hurricanes, I did not think much of it. When I found out about the storm making landfall as a Category 4 or 5 on Monday, I was bedridden with the flu that Saturday before. My car did not run, neither did my mother's, so my mother, sister, and I were sitting ducks at that point. My large, extended family had multiple vehicles, and not one member attempted to rescue my sister or mother. I was not bothered so much by their selfish act towards myself, but my mother at the time had Congestive Heart Failure, Osteoarthritis, and High Blood Pressure. My sister had a debilitating autoimmune disease called Polymyositis (which she ultimately passed of, three years later). Neither one was at the forefront of any "family member's" mind when planning to evacuate. We ended up enduring the storm and its aftermath for one week after the hurricane passed, with other residents of the apartment complex where my mom and sister stayed. To this day, I have never looked at my "family" the same, and will never consider them as individuals I would ever count on.

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Citation

A. Opara, “[Untitled],” Hurricane Digital Memory Bank, accessed November 20, 2019, http://hurricanearchive.org/items/show/45509.