Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Got good news?

Today is not only the day after Labor Day and the unofficial end of summer but a day where I felt like anything that I've allowed to fall through the cracks has reared its ugly head and slapped me in the face. Add to this news out of New Orleans, an uncle with mere days left to his life and I'm in need of something positive. Dogs in cars usually works well but today I am looking for something more. I need a true life story about a reunited family (including pets), a politician being honest, or a baby being born. Got good news? Bring it on!


Blogger Sonya said...

Your site is very good!


7:43 PM  
Blogger Tommy Gnosis said...

I agree that this is an impressive site. Perhaps you're interested in some free ipods?

Or maybe a Bulldog in a car?

9:15 PM  
Blogger Kelli said...

Actually 'winning' ipods is nice and Betty is fun too but this is what I'm looking for: Real people making a difference in the best way they know how architects and landscape designers are starting to gather together to come up with a real urban plan to give a new life to those in NO that had little and now have nothing. Can you imagine? Instead of going back to having little, giving people a new chance in life. A reset button...that is beautiful. Hope helped me turn a corner out of my grumpy mood. A picture of Betty helps too. :)

9:32 PM  
Blogger Kurt said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:44 PM  
Blogger Kurt said...

This is only a minor victory in the New Orleans mess but I spotted an ad on Craigslist from a NJ woman frantically seeking info on a mutual friend who lives in NO. Luckily Barry was here in New England visting friends and family so I was able to happily report to her that I was hanging out with him the weekend of the hurricane and both he and his gf are now safe and sound in Maine. The relief in her response to my message was pretty evident. Cool stuff, this interweb thingymabob.

10:46 PM  
Blogger Kelli said...

Nice! This is great news to wake up to, Kurt. Thanks.

6:22 AM  
Blogger Maryellen said...

your favorite sister in law will come thru for ya i hope... the day after the hurricane hit, i got an email from a very good friend (more like a sister to me than my own sister is) in Loozy (about 4 hours north of NO) She and her son were fine, but she was extremely worried about her aunt, uncle and cousin in gulfport Missisippi.. they wouldn't leave their home during the hurricane, and no one had heard from them - expecting the worst.

two days later.... another uncle was able to go by the relatives house only to find nothing but the foundation and after some looking around, found the uncle dead in a tree (I'm getting to the good news - I promise) they heard nothing from the aunt or the sister, and with rumors of hundreds of people washing up on the beach, they feared the worst...

tonite i get an email from my friend - and i figgered i share with you

What a torturous week, but Thank God, my aunt and cousin have been found and are now safe! I just wanted to tell ya' what happened to them... Their story is so unbelievable...

Their house began filling with water and was waist deep in a short while after the storm started coming ashore. (They lived in a small town on the outskirts of Waveland, MS called Lakeshore, which happened to be the exact spot the eye seemed to be headed for). They still thought that this was as bad as it was going to get until a few minutes later it started coming in much faster... so they put my uncle on the couch, (he was in a wheelchair) because the couch was floating... and after a few minutes of hoping it was going to stop, they saw that it wasn't as it got inches away from the ceiling, and decided they had to get outside of the house.

They swam to the front door, but it wouldn't open I guess it was jammed because the water caused it to swell... so they then swam to the back door... my aunt told my uncle that he would have to go under water for a second, just to get past the doorway, and this is when he passed away... when he came up out of the water he was gone. (probably from a heart attack because it was much too quick to be drowning)

So, they tried to hold onto his body in all the water and the wind, to no avail... he floated off and got hung up in a tree. The house begins to rip apart, and a large piece of the house rushed towards my cousing, pinning her between it and a tree... she was pretty bruised up, but thankfully, fought for her life and managed to break free... and then swimming to try to climb onto the roof of the house where her mom had gotten to try to rescue her. They stayed on top of this roof being tossed about on the water for the rest of the worst part of the storm which lasted about 4 hours... and when the winds started dying down and they could tell the water was receding somewhat, they decided they had to climb down and try to walk into town where they might could find some help.

So they waded for about 3 miles through waist deep water... chest deep in some places... my aunt almost lost her toe, but they made it, and by some miracle, they encountered one of my uncle's grown children from the wife he had before he married my aunt... she was with her husband and 3 kids who had been in an apartment but had to evacuate the flooding and spent the storm on a big sign... almost like a billboard... for those 4 hours.. anyway... they all then were able to walk to a shelter where they spent the first night.

The next day, they found another sister whose house miraculously was still in almost perfect condition. It had been in a neighborhood on higher ground, so they had some minor wind damage and none of the water damage. That is where they have been all week, with no electricity, no phones, and no water... they had no water for 3 days but said that the salvation army started delivering water and mre's on the 4th day. They had been like this all week..

The sister (Jane) had a cell phone that worked in some places and they called my mom's cell phone. We didn't realize it was them because the service was so bad, and we couldn't hear what they were saying, and didn't recognize the phone number. So, I sent a text message for them to try to call back if they had any information on my aunt and cousin, not knowing who this was that had called, and left my sisters telephone number with them. They finally got through late Saturday night, and we got to talk to them! So, my sisters and I drove, terrified after hearing horrid stories about the bodies being everywhere and people robbing other people for supplies, especially gas, with a van full of supplies and gas that we tried to hide with blankets and stuff, to go and get my cousin. My aunt refused to leave because she wants to make sure my uncle's body is taken care of etc. but my cousin is now here, at my house, safe and sound, except for some swelling, a few minor bruises, and the horrible emotional stuff I'm sure she'll have to deal with for years.

We are just so blessed to have them alive. We found out about my uncle relatively early in the week, and after not hearing from them, we just knew they didn't make it... and had already begun to accept that they didn't.

I will miss my uncle, he was a good man, in all senses of the word. He was so generous... literally one of those people who would give you the shirt off of his back... so we will miss him for a long time, but the alternative is really so unthinkable... there's no other way to put it.. my family is very lucky today.


7:50 PM  
Blogger Kelli said...

Just incredible, isn't it? Human spirit is stronger than we realize. Thanks for sharing your 'sisters' story.

I was listening to NPR and there was a guy who prayed to God (I'm not getting all religious here - it is just part of the story) before the storm that if he survived, he would devote himself to helping others. Sure enough, he survived and he is standing by his word and devoting himself to finding survivors, helping people through the water, getting people food and water... whatever people need. He refuses money and on air was offered money for helping someone. He said "No man, I don't need money, what am I going to do with money - money isn't going to get me anything that I need right now". Priorities have shifted in a not so subtle way for a lot of people.

10:52 PM  

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