My Katrina Story\r\nAubrey Kane\r\n \r\n\r\nTwo nights before Katrina hit my boyfriend and I sat at our house on Severn Ave. in Metairie glued to the television. As we watched the category 5 storm churn angrily towards New Orleans we began to call our families in order to find out what the evacuation plans would be. Since my mother and my step dad already had a place to go in northern Mississippi, I felt that my boyfriend\'s family needed me the most. My boyfriend\'s grandmother recently got a feeding tube put in her stomach, his uncle had a severe case of cerebral palsy, and his father recently had a heart attack. I knew this family needed my help. I can remember my boyfriend and I grabbing our two piggy banks to bring with us. We had been saving for a year to go to Hawaii in December. I cried as we dumped out all of our coins into the machine to pay for our evacuation. There was no time to be sad however, we needed to get out of the city. The day before Katrina hit we all piled into three different cars and began our journey out of New Orleans. We had no idea where we going or where we would end up. Fortunately, my aunt had another room in Vicksburg, Ms. We had six adults, two children, and three dogs all in one hotel room. The night went by and we stayed tuned to the news. Katrina had passed and while the storm was strong we all thought we would be able to return home in a few days. Little did we know all hell was about to break loose! The storm eventually came through Vicksburg and all of the power went out. We simply could not stay in the hotel without power with the condition of my boyfriend\'s family. Once again we all piled into the car to find some where else to go. When we left Vicksburg we were able to listen to the radio and hear Arron Broussard screaming and crying on the radio. We knew things were worse then what we originally thought. Rumors began to circle around that it would be a month before we could get home! We drove to Monroe where we found a shelter that would take animals. I have never seen so many people in distress. People were angry, sad, and confused. When we arrived the Red Cross wanted to take my boyfriends grandmother and uncle to a special needs shelter. Needless to say the family did not want to split up. We were able to talk them into letting the family stay together in the crowded shelter. The Red Cross were actually very helpful. They called hospitals to get medicine for the uncle and the grandmother. They even set up games for the kids and walked the dogs for you. It was nice to see such helping, loving, and caring people in such a time of need. We stayed at the shelter for one week until people from the flood water began to show up on busses. We were told to stay away from these people until they were \"decontaminated.\" My boyfriend and I couldn\'t risk the health of his family and we decided to leave the shelter. We drove all the way to Baton Rouge with no plan as to where to go. We ended up pulling over at a Wendy\'s so the family could regroup and try to make a plan. As I sat there and cried a man in a pick up truck drove up to me. He asked if we had a place to go and wanted to know where we were from. In between tears I explained our situation. All of a sudden he handed me a hotel key from across the street. He said it was paid for a week and we needed it more than him. I will never forget that man. I have never had a complete stranger be so trusting and nice to me. We did stay at the hotel for a week and eventually snuck into Jefferson Parish. A life filled with debris and MRE\'s soon followed. We did end up taking our vacation to Hawaii in December! It is crazy how things work out but I feel that the kindness that was exhibited during the hurricanes really gave me a different outlook on life.

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“[Untitled],” Hurricane Digital Memory Bank, accessed August 10, 2022, https://hurricanearchive.org/items/show/33452.

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