Showing posts with label Hurricane Katrina. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hurricane Katrina. Show all posts

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Firefighter counts herself blessed to be able to help during one more

A veteran of tragedies from 9/11 to Katrina, one firefighter counts herself blessed to be able to help during one more

Los Angeles Times
Louie Sahagun
January 12, 2018

In the 27 years since joining the Los Angeles Fire Department, Hollyn Bullock has reported for search-and-rescue duty for tragedies like the World Trade Center terrorist attack in New York, Hurricane Katrina and the deadly train derailment in Chatsworth that claimed 25 lives.

Los Angeles firefighter Hollyn Bullock. (Louis Sahagun / Los Angeles Times)
On Friday, the veteran firefighter joined a team scouring through the wreckage of the latest disaster. Seventeen people were dead after mudslides tore through the Santa Barbara County community of Montecito. At least five remained missing.
And so, along a sodden, debris-tangled corner just east of the 101 Freeway, Bullock and others searched on.
“Honestly, I feel fulfilled, even blessed to have been given the opportunity to get in there and help people in times of crisis,” she said as fellow firefighters hosed contaminated mud off her boots and pant legs.
She was part of a team of 26 men and one woman: herself. 

Friday, January 29, 2016

Disney Finest Hours Honors Coast Guard

“The Finest Hours” celebrates a heroic, near impossible Coast Guard rescue — one of many in Coast Guard history
FRIDAY, JAN 29, 2016
From New Orleans after Katrina to a daring San Francisco Bay rescue, up-from-below leadership took center stage
In the book turned Disney action movie ‘The Finest Hours,” due out Jan. 29, Chris Pine plays real-life Coast Guard hero Bernie Webber. In February 1952 Webber and his crew of three saved 32 of 33 sailors trapped on the stern end of the Pendleton, a ship that split in two during a historic storm off New England. The Pendleton was one of two war-surplus tankers that were torn asunder by the monster storm’s 40-60-foot waves. Webber’s seamanship running his 36-foot motor lifeboat through snow-blown surf and making a near impossible rescue quickly earned him a place in the annals of gold-medal lifesaving.

Still, his rescue is just one of many in Coast Guard history. Its ranks of heroes who’ve pulled off similar amazing feats range from Alaska’s “Hell Roaring” Mike Healy to North Carolina’s Rasmus Midgett and Richard Etheridge to Rhode Island Lighthouse keeper Ida Lewis to the aviators and small boat crews who surged into New Orleans and the Gulf Coast following 2005’s Hurricane Katrina, saving 33,000 lives.
read more here

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Air Force Veteran Reunited with Child He Rescued After Hurricane Katrina

''Katrina Girl' Found: Air Force Vet to Reunite With Child He Rescued
NBC New York
September 3, 2015

It has been 10 years since former Air Force pararescuer Mike Maroney rescued a then three-year-old girl from the despair of Hurricane Katrina. A military photographer captured the little girl in a pink shirt smiling and hugging Maroney in a widely shared 2005 image.

Her hug "recharged me and gave me a little bit of a silver lining and some hope…that kept me going through rough times," Maroney told People magazine of the moment. But after the rescue, the two never saw each other.
read more here

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

New Orleans Officer convicted of burning body seeks new trial

Officer convicted of burning Henry Glover's body asks judge for new trial
The Times-Picayune
By Juliet Linderman,
December 16, 2013

As one officer has walked free following a retrial in the post-Hurricane Katrina shooting of Henry Glover, another is making new arguments in an effort to get his case before a new jury.

Former New Orleans Police officer Gregory McRae, who is serving a prison term after his 2010 conviction for burning Glover's lifeless body in a car left on the Algiers levee, has asked a judge for a new trial, saying he has newly discovered information -- both about McRae's own psychological state and conduct of federal prosecutors -- that warrants a redo.

McRae made his latest bid while David Warren, the ex-NOPD officer who shot Glover on Sept. 2, 2005 outside an Algiers strip mall, was on trial for the second time this month. A jury acquitted Warren of all charges last Wednesday.

McRae's defense attorney Michael Fawer said in court papers filed this month that his client recently saw for the first time pretrial services report issued in February 2011 for, which says McRae was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder when he threw roadside flares into the car carrying Glover's wounded body and left it to burn on the Algiers levee.
read more here

Friday, August 31, 2012

At 22 Iraq War Veteran Battles Cancer, Isaac all after Katrina

Iraq War Veteran Battles Cancer, Isaac
Aug 30, 2012
Written by
Gannett News Service
Written By: Jon Shirek

POWDER SPRINGS, Ga. -- It was seven years ago when the world watched with jaws dropped as residents of New Orleans were rescued from Hurricane Katrina's floodwaters.

And just like seven years ago, all across Metro Atlanta people are again opening their homes and their hearts to Louisiana families needing shelter from the storm, a storm this time named Isaac.

In one home, in particular -- in Powder Springs -- there is inspiration.

It comes from an Isaac evacuee who is 22 years old, who has already been through more life-threatening adversity than most, and who is just hoping he can get back fast to help rebuild his hometown -- again.

"It's devastation after devastation," he said Wednesday evening, and through it all he has learned to be steady as a rock -- for his family, for his hometown of New Orleans.
read more here

Friday, August 17, 2012

Helping female veterans with nowhere to turn

Helping female veterans with nowhere to turn
By Alanna Durkin
Medill News Service
Posted : Friday Aug 17, 2012

In August 2005, Army Lt. Jas Boothe had one thing on her mind: getting herself - and the son she was raising on her own - ready for her deployment to Iraq.

But a phone call and a doctor’s visit a few weeks later changed everything. Boothe, who was 28 at the time, learned her home had been destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. Soon after that, she was diagnosed with cancer in her head, neck and throat.

“So, now there is no deployment, there is no home and now I’m facing losing my military career, which is how I take care of my child,” she said in a recent interview.

She began to research housing options. The Veterans Affairs Department referred her to social services, where she was told she qualified for welfare and food stamps.

“There were a ton of services, housing facilities for men, but someone had forgotten about the women,” she said. “Our sacrifice was not equated to that of the males’ sacrifice, and that was shown in the level of services that we didn’t have.”

After 30 radiation treatments and two surgeries, the military cleared Boothe for duty. Now a captain in the Army National Guard, she was able to stay in the military, afford a home and support her son. But her experience taught her that there were likely other women veterans with nowhere to turn.
read more here

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Vietnam Veteran's medals replaced after originals lost to hurricane Katrina

Vet receives new Purple Heart, other medals lost during Katrina
Posted: Aug 09, 2012
By Charles Herrington

Courtesy: Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center Public Affairs Office

A Hattiesburg Vietnam veteran who lost his Purple Heart and other service medals in Hurricane Katrina has had them replaced, thanks to Congressman Steven Palazzo.

Navy veteran Michael Risley was presented with the Military Order of the Purple Heart at Camp Shelby Thursday morning.
He originally received the medal for wounds he suffered in Vietnam in 1968.
read more here

Friday, August 27, 2010

Katrina Five Years After: Hurricane Left a Legacy of Health Concerns

Katrina Five Years After: Hurricane Left a Legacy of Health Concerns
Friday, August 27, 2010
By Brian Donnelly

Five years ago, Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf region, killing nearly 2,000 and displacing more than 250,000 others from Louisiana to Florida. This week, in a series titled "Hurricane Katrina: Five Years After," looks back on the costliest natural disaster ever to strike the United States.

When Hurricane Katrina ripped through New Orleans, leaving a legacy of death and destruction in its wake, the storm's immediate effects were evident. But now, five years later, the long-term effects on the devastated population’s mental and physical health still linger.

A study released this week linked the costliest natural disaster in U.S. history with a high incidence of anxiety in Gulf Coast-area children displaced by the hurricane, while another found increased sensitivity to mold in children with asthma whose homes were flooded.

“Being exposed to transient home situations, not being able to get access to care and the adversity of just the recovery process fraught with so many difficulties added and compounded the stress and trauma of being exposed to the devastation and personal loss of life and property during the event of the hurricane and the flooding itself,” said Anthony Speier, psychologist and deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Behavioral Health for the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals. “So that kind of set the stage for increased vulnerability of the population.”
read more here
Hurricane Left a Legacy of Health Concerns

Katrina's toll includes rise in suicide, mental illness

By Pam Firmin McClatchy Newspapers
BILOXI, Miss. — The last five years have been a mental health roller coaster for many among the Mississippi Gulf Coast's post-Hurricane Katrina population.

Suicides are up since Katrina hit on Aug. 29, 2005. More people are seeking treatment for substance abuse, therapists say, and post-traumatic stress disorder is on the rebound.

Though suicide numbers were higher in 2004 than in the years immediately after the storm, they have climbed in the years that followed. In Harrison County, the largest county on the Mississippi Coast, the number of people who committed suicide has increased since the storm from 30 in 2005 to 32 in 2006, 36 in 2007 and 44 in 2008.

Read more: Katrina and toll on mental health

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Aftermath of Katrina, kids still suffering

Aftermath of Katrina, kids still suffering five years later. It was not just the hurricane. It was not just the flood. It was what came after that increased the damage done to their lives. Dead bodies floating. Days without any help at all. Seeing their parents in a panic not knowing what to do or where to go for help. Then came the understanding life as they have known it was gone. They ended up living in different states after losing everything they found security in. Their clothes, toys, rooms they lived in, all gone. Their friends, school, churches and neighborhood streets they knew like the back of their hands gone. It was not all gone in an instant but a progression of loss they suffered for this one extreme natural disaster.

Tens of thousands of children still affected by Hurricane Katrina
By Michelle Brandt

As you may have read about elsewhere today, Hurricane Katrina struck five years ago this week. And according to a new Children's Health Fund/Columbia University report (link to .pdf), published in Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness, some of the hardest-hit victims of the natural disaster and its aftermath were also the smallest. As outlined in a release today, there are still widespread mental health issues among children living in the region:

[Sixty percent] of children - as many as 20,000 - displaced by Katrina either have serious emotional disorders, behavioral issues and/or are experiencing significant housing instability
One-third of children are reported to have been diagnosed with at least one mental health problem, but fewer than 50% of parents were able to access needed professional services
Children post-Katrina are 4.5 times more likely to have serious emotional disturbance than children not affected by the disaster

read more here
Tens of thousands of children

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Can President Obama save Katrina's kids?

Katrina’s Kids
President Obama is visiting New Orleans for only one day. His potential impact on the city's children, however, could last much longer.

By Mary Carmichael
Newsweek Web Exclusive
Oct 15, 2009
On Thursday, President Barack Obama was scheduled to visit a New Orleans school that was wracked by Hurricane Katrina and reopened only after residents of the Ninth Ward put in a lot of work. By day's end, he planned to leave. Critics and local officials have been quick to slam Obama for making such a brief visit. But the president doesn't need to be on the ground in New Orleans for long. "He's going there to make a statement, and he doesn't need more than a day to make it," says Irwin Redlener, president of the nonprofit Children's Health Fund and commissioner of the National Commission on Children and Disasters, a bipartisan panel appointed by the president and congressional leaders.

The more important statement Obama will make won't come in the form of a speech, and it won't be made on Thursday. It will consist of what his administration actually does over the next three years for the Gulf Coast's population, especially its children, who are still suffering mightily. "Kids get a lot of lip service in disaster planning, but they tend to get far fewer resources than they need," says Redlener. "The mantra of 'children are our most valuable resource' is almost never matched by actual funding."

Certainly, that's been the case in the gulf since Katrina. After years of bureaucratic haggling, recovery efforts are starting to get some momentum and some cash—Obama's administration has allocated more than $1 billion in aid for Louisiana alone. But "thousands of families have been falling through the cracks because it's been such a disorganized and disrupted safety net," says Redlener, who briefed the president's recovery team at the White House on Tuesday. "There's just too many of them in the gulf now who are still waiting for something to happen."
read more here

Monday, August 31, 2009

Shake the Devil Off

Book reviews: 'Shake the Devil Off' by Ethan Brown and 'The Year Before the Flood' by Ned Sublette

12:00 AM CDT on Sunday, August 30, 2009
By BEATRIZ TERRAZAS / Special Contributor to The Dallas Morning News
Beatriz Terrazas is a former Dallas Morning News photographer and writer whose work will be published in TCU Press' upcoming Literary El Paso.

Just in time for Hurricane Katrina's fourth anniversary come two ambitious books set against New Orleans. Both lay bare collective wounds.

In Shake The Devil Off: A True Story of the Murder That Rocked New Orleans, veteran journalist Ethan Brown examines post-traumatic stress disorder through Zackery Bowen, a charismatic soldier in the U.S. Army's 527th MP Company.

Zack, a New Orleans bartender before his enlistment, did tours of duty in Kosovo and Iraq. While overseas, his marriage derailed. Discharged in 2004, he returned with his family to New Orleans only to divorce and begin a turbulent relationship with artist Addie Hall. They were among the holdouts who made headlines by riding out Katrina.

A year later, having survived Kosovo, Iraq and Katrina, Zack made news again by killing Addie, dismembering her body, then killing himself.

One psychiatrist tells Brown that Zack's downward spiral probably had several causes, including the loss of friends in Iraq, the collapse of his marriage and the transition to civilian life. Zack's fellow soldiers express feelings of being forgotten by the rest of America.

But Brown discovers the military, too, is at fault. He cites a VA memo cautioning against PTSD diagnoses: "Consider a diagnosis of Adjustment Disorder ... we really don't have time to do the extensive testing that should be done to determine PTSD." At the same time, the National Institute of Mental Health warned that inadequate mental health care could lead to "postwar suicides among Iraq and Afghanistan vets" exceeding combat deaths.

read more here

Shake the Devil Off

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Suicides climb in New Orleans

Suicides climb in New Orleans 3:24
CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta looks at the effects on mental health caused by Hurricane Katrina.

4 years after Katrina, NOLA mental health system still in crisis
Story Highlights
New Orleans continues to face crisis of mental health needs, resources

Study: Before storm, area had 487 inpatient psychiatric beds; now,190

Police officer's slaying by mentally ill man renewed spotlight on city's needs

By Stephanie Smith
CNN Medical Producer

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) -- As the storm raged outside her hospital room four years ago, an equally consuming force hijacked Alesia Crockett's mind: deep depression.

For days, Crockett lay in darkness and a tangle of sweaty hospital bed sheets, one among hundreds of desperate patients trapped inside Charity Hospital in 2005, while outside, Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath battered the city.

Crockett had been admitted to Charity's inpatient mental health unit after having a psychotic episode. She had struggled for years with bipolar disorder, an illness that causes her to volley between euphoria and profound depression.

She said she barely remembers Katrina.

"Most of the time, I was in a fog, but I do remember some things," Crockett said. "Where my room was, I could see thousands of people wandering, and I could see the waters rise."

Crockett, and many other New Orleanians suffering from chronic mental illness -- and those with what is called "soft depression," or nonchronic mental illness -- say Katrina may have relented days after it hit New Orleans proper, but their mental health issues have not.

In January 2008, a New Orleans police officer was killed by a man suffering from psychosis due to schizophrenia, New Orleans police said. The officer, Nicola Cotton, approached 44-year-old Bernel Johnson for questioning about a rape. A struggle ensued, and Johnson overpowered and killed Cotton with her own gun, police said.

read more here

NOLA mental health system still in crisis

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Katrina victims to be evicted — again

While I fully understand this nation has deep troubles and many problems to fix, I cannot understand how it is that the survivors of Katrina, after all this time, still have not received the help they need to move on with their lives. President Obama and his cabinet have only been on the job a few months but didn't they have someone taking care of these people? Wasn't it bad enough they were abandoned by the government and then given trailers to live in with formaldehyde? I know that wasn't on President Obama's watch but surely he must have been aware of what they've been going thru. So what are they supposed to do now?

Katrina victims to be evicted — again

By Muriel Kane

Published: May 29, 2009
Updated 1 day ago

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has decided to enforce a June 1 date — originally established by the Bush administration — for the eviction of several thousand victims of Hurricane Katrina who are still living in temporary trailers after nearly four years.

In a Friday press release, the US Human Rights Network stated that this decision “not only lacks basic compassion but is also a derogation of the government’s responsibilities to uphold fundamental human rights.”

“Instead of carrying out the former administration’s callous plan for eviction,” the press release continues, “the Obama administration and Congress should apply the United Nations’ Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, a human rights policy that, for several years, has guided our government in providing temporary and permanent homes for people in foreign countries who become displaced by earthquakes, typhoons, and flooding.”
go here for more
Katrina victims to be evicted — again

Monday, December 29, 2008

Ex-aides say Bush never recovered from Katrina

I remember trying to simply get people to open their eyes about President Bush. People I normally would have gotten along with fine, were so defensive of Bush they would not open their ears, or even think about what was being said. Most of them were normally reasonable people until 9-11, then it was almost as if they regarded Bush as America. No matter what he did, they defended him, even if it meant they would have to suffer for it. Most of us did suffer for what he did and what he did not do. The people of New Orleans suffering was too much for even the media to tolerate.

Ex-aides say Bush never recovered from Katrina
Monday, December 29, 2008

(12-29) 18:41 PST WASHINGTON, (AP) --

Hurricane Katrina not only pulverized the Gulf Coast in 2005, it knocked the bully pulpit out from under President George W. Bush, according to two former advisers who spoke candidly about the political impact of the government's poor handling of the natural disaster.

"Katrina to me was the tipping point," said Matthew Dowd, Bush's pollster and chief strategist for the 2004 presidential campaign. "The president broke his bond with the public. Once that bond was broken, he no longer had the capacity to talk to the American public. State of the Union addresses? It didn't matter. Legislative initiatives? It didn't matter. P.R.? It didn't matter. Travel? It didn't matter."

Dan Bartlett, former White House communications director and later counselor to the president, said: "Politically, it was the final nail in the coffin."
click link above for more

Sunday, December 21, 2008

New Orleans CNN Hero of the Year talks about what came after

Ask the CNN Hero of the Year 29:24
Liz McCartney answers your questions and talks about how her life has changed since becoming CNN's Hero of the Year.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Appalling: The Untold Story of Hurricane Katrina's Violent Race War

Appalling: The Untold Story of Hurricane Katrina's Violent Race War

Posted by Jill Tubman, Jack & Jill Politics at 11:17 AM on December 19, 2008.

Armed whites targeted innocent black victims fleeing from the storm’s aftermath.

The worst thing about this is that when some people were interviewed involved with shooting "blacks" seemed proud of what they did and speaking as if the men they shot were not men at all. Didn't seem to matter to them that the men they shot at were their neighbors.

After the storm, White vigilantes roamed Algiers Point shooting and, according to their own accounts, killing Black men at will- with no threat of a police response. For the last three years, the shootings and the police force's role in them have been an open secret to many New Orleanians. To date, no one has been charged with a crime and law enforcement officials have refused to investigate.

click above for more

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Michael Moore's letter to God about Gustav

Michael, I know your heart is in the right place and you were thinking about James Dobson asking his flock to pray for rain on the Democrats gathered outside for Obama's speech, but Michael and all my Democratic friends out there, this is not something to make light of nor is it an opportunity to challenge God. It was wrong of Dobson to ask God for something bad to happen to other people. What can we expect from a man who indulges in appearing as a pastor when he isn't trained or ordained as one? He has his own interpretation of God and very little knowledge of the love of Christ. Forget about him, let's get back to you.

We all need to pray for the people who are in the path of Gustav.

Pray for the first responders who are waiting to rush in to help anyone in need. They are ready to help people, not political party members, not people based on financial means, not based on religious beliefs, but all of God's children in harms way.

Pray for the National Guards and the Police officers as they try to keep people calm and evacuate them as easily as possible while they leave everything they own behind once more.

Pray all that was promised waiting to help the people in the states watching the sky for Gustav will have that help as promised.

Pray for the elderly who have chosen not to leave.

Pray the Republicans do what they say they will do and turn their convention into a helpful time instead of a time to celebrate.

Pray for this nation to once more become a nation of one out of many where we are all Americans again and in this together.

Michael, use the goodness and talent God blessed you with for good.

Senior Chaplain Kathie Costos

"The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive veterans of early wars were treated and appreciated by our nation." - George Washington

Michael Moore's letter to God

Two days after saying that the fact that Hurricane Gustav could hit New Orleans on the same day the Republicans open their national convention was "proof that there is a God in heaven," filmmaker Michael Moore today sought to clarify his remarks with "An Open Letter to God, from Michael Moore," on his Web site.
The text includes:
Now, heavenly Father, we all know You have a great sense of humor and impeccable timing. To send a hurricane on the third anniversary of the Katrina disaster AND right at the beginning of the Republican Convention was, at first blush, a stroke of divine irony. I don't blame You, I know You're angry that the Republicans tried to blame YOU for Katrina by calling it an "Act of God" -- when the truth was that the hurricane itself caused few casualties in New Orleans. Over a thousand people died because of the mistakes and neglect caused by humans, not You. Continue reading "Filmmaker Michael Moore expands on Gustav comments" »

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Gulf coast residents flee Gustav with memories of Katrina

Gulf Coast residents flee deadly Gustav
Thousands of residents hit the road this morning as deadly Hurricane Gustav threatened Cuba and stayed on track to slam into the Gulf Coast sometime late Monday or early Tuesday. The powerful Category 3 storm is raising memories of catastrophic Hurricane Katrina, which hit New Orleans almost exactly three years ago. full story

Friday, August 29, 2008

Divorce stalks Katrina survivors

Divorce stalks Katrina survivors
Story Highlights
Katrina survivor Ricky Murray is trying to save his marriage

Despite heart attack, he's still trying to repair his flood-damaged home

After three years in FEMA trailer, wife is talking about divorce

Pastor says he's busy counseling couples who are stressed out; many split up
By Sean Callebs

(CNN) -- Ricky Murray was having a miserable year long before a storm named Gustav started threatening the Gulf Coast area. Now he's afraid he will lose his family because of a previous hurricane.

It has been three years since Hurricane Katrina killed more than 1,800 people when it struck, scouring Mississippi beach towns down to bare sand and rupturing the protective levees around New Orleans, Louisiana.

Eight feet of floodwater left Murray's home in Slidell, Louisiana, uninhabitable. He's been working on the house, but he and his wife and three children have been living in a FEMA trailer.

Murray also lost his job. He recently suffered a heart attack -- brought on in part by stress, according to doctors. But what's really agonizing for him is that his wife of 16 years says she is considering a divorce. Watch their difficult living situation »
to read more go here

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Amber Alert for missing kids in Houston

Amber Alert issued after Houston woman leaves with 5 kids
By LINDSAY WISE Copyright 2008 Houston Chronicle
Aug. 6, 2008, 6:32PM
Authorities issued an Amber Alert on Wednesday after a woman disappeared with five children she had taken in when they were displaced by Hurricane Katrina.

Rhonda Tavey, 44, is charged with five counts of kidnapping, said Harris County Assistant District Attorney Jane Waters, chief of the family criminal law division.

Tavey says she is protecting the children from alleged abuse and neglect by their biological parents, authorities said.

A Dallas television station spoke with Tavey before the Amber Alert was issued. "Their parents are into drugs, crime and I know God put these kids into my hands to take care of," Tavey told WFAA-TV.

The district attorney's office and law enforcement officials have asked Child Protective Services to look into the case, said agency spokeswoman Estella Olguin.

"A report has been made to us that children have been kidnapped and the caregiver claims she can't give the kids back because the biological mom and dad have hurt the children and will hurt the children," Olguin said. "If the kids do show up, we'll have to look into whether the children are at risk if they remain with her or if they return to the mom."
go here for more