After the Flood: One Year Later
By Sheryl McAlister, a writer based in SC
A year ago this week, this part of the country was hit with storms so severe lives were lost, and homes and livelihoods were destroyed. For those hardest hit, the recovery has been difficult. Yet, they persevere. And those who lost everything have found gratitude somehow, some way.
The stories abound out of that tragic time. There are literally thousands of reports of heroism and the extraordinary efforts by ordinary people. There are many personal tales of miracles that appeared in many forms – jon boats, total strangers and yard chairs. One family of seven found itself, like so many others, awakened by the violent storm — its devastating currents swallowing up their home as they tried to wipe the sleep out of their eyes.
As the father stepped outside the front door to assess the situation, his oldest son was nearly lost when the current picked him up to sweep him away. The father grabbed him just in time, only to realize that his family was likely going to perish if something didn’t happen fast.
At that moment, two outdoor lounge chairs floated by his front door. Two chairs that earlier had been in his back yard had somehow made their way around front at the precise moment he needed them to save his family. By his account, he threw his younger children on the chairs, and the rest held on, riding the current to safety.
I wrote a pair of pieces last year that seemed to strike a chord with folks – both in this area and others. Come Hell or High Water and The Aftermath. One reader, who lives in Belgium and is an expat from New Orleans, remembered Hurricane Katrina far too well, and the pieces even resonated with her. So I thought I’d share them again.
A year later, there are folks still hurting in our area. There are folks still in need in our area. Many lost every single thing they had accumulated in a lifetime. Don’t forget about them.
Copyright © 2016 Sheryl McAlister