Studying at Keesler AFB during Katrina
Hurricane Katrina brings countless memories. I had never, and have not since, experienced anything like it. I was studying weather, of all things, at Keesler AFB in Biloxi. A last minute decision was made to shelter in place instead of the previously planned evacuation, and I was recalled to return to Biloxi on Saturday while en-route to Texas. This made absolutely no sense. I spent five long days in a shelter that had lost power with over a thousand other people. Living conditions became horrible. Civil engineers actually locked and boarded the shelter from the outside prior to the peak of the storm. When we were finally released on Thursday, we were sent to gaining bases or instructed to return to our previous assignment. This again made no sense. Folks were called back into harm’s way, then released to evacuate after the danger had passed. I was told the colonel who made these decisions was forced to retire shortly thereafter.