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Kevin Miller, who came out to see the president, said it was a pleasant respite from the suffering and despair that has engulfed the area since Hurricane Katrina.

On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall off the coast of Louisiana. It made landfall as a Category 3 hurricane, with winds gusting to 120 miles per hour. The hurricane is frequently regarded as one of the worst in US history due to the resulting devastation and loss of life. The hurricane killed an estimated 1,200 people and caused an estimated $108 billion in property damage, making it the most expensive storm on record.

VOA White House Correspondent Scott Stearns accompanied President Bush on a visit to the hardest-hit areas, witnessing firsthand what people have lost and hearing inspiring stories of survival. In this reporter's notebook, he tells what he witnessed in the heavily flooded cities of New Orleans and Biloxi, Mississippi.


The president's convoy weaved its way through the wreckage, through mud-strewn streets, through furniture drying in the yards of demolished homes, and around vehicles flipped on their sides by the storm's fierce winds. What was once a community is now a mess of cinder blocks and lumber as you turn left along Howard Avenue, only a block from the Gulf of Mexico.

Katrina hurricane On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall off the coast of Louisiana. It made landfall as a Category 3 hurricane.Pixabay

Bobby Lane and his family were attempting to weather the storm in their house when his kid burst into the room. 'Daddy, the water is flowing through the door,' the youngster murmured as he awoke me. As a result, water began to rise from the door ', Bobby Lane remarked. 'So we put a sheet around each other and led each other out the door to a neighbor's house, where we all crawled up in the attic,' says the narrator. They were in the attic three hours, the water still rising.

"We looked out the ventilation of the attic, and we saw the water about a foot from the attic," he said. "Man, the women asked what was going on. So, we had to lie to them and tell them something different. Do you know what I'm saying? We didn't want to get them upset. It was a horrible sight, I'll tell you that."

ALSO READ: Oklahoma tornado survivors share stories

Kevin Miller, who came out to see the president, said it was a pleasant respite from the suffering and despair that has engulfed the area since Hurricane Katrina. Mr. Miller weathered the storm by climbing 7.5 meters up a tree. It seemed like a stock car race, he adds.

Meanwhile, another survivor shared his story. When the structure collapsed, Charles Grant was in the upper corridor of the United Methodist Seashore Mission. "When it let go, it let go," Charles Grant remarked. "We were being bombarded by bricks. I gave up and floated to the top, where there was a large white roof, which I climbed upon, and there was the end of it. In the midst of the storm, I stayed for four hours."

Moving forward, President Bush looked out over a fire on the water's surface caused by a ruptured gas line, with bubbles rising from beneath. Catfish leap at a Baptist church's stained glass windows. "These are difficult times," he said. "This is a storm like I've never seen before," the President added. (VOA/JC)

(This article is a rehash from Voice of America)


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