March 3 rd – 10 th , 2007 A stark line of remembrance still outlines most houses and businesses - a line that is 6’, 8’, 12 feet or higher above the ground, a line that marks the wrath of mother nature and in some instances failed engineering.
“ Nothing prepares you for this work. Everyone has seen the news, the pictures from the Superdome, to people being rescued from roof tops. But, to be here and see with your own eyes makes it real and sculpts flesh on those images. It puts a name and a story to a face and abandoned structures…”
We learned about the Levee system. This is a Levee.
“ The first home we worked on…” Our job for the week was to gut homes. None of us knew what to expect…
“ Our first home was in St. Bernard Parish. The home we were gutting had not been touched since the storm hit 18 months ago. We walked up to the home, brick facade, yard overgrown, some debris outside, for the most part looking pretty good. Then, we looked up and noticed grass, branches, part of a neighbor’s fence and other wetland debris resting on the roof. The water topped out over the roof line. You walk through the front door as you have never walked through a front door before, armed with protective goggles, face mask, gloves, a tool in one hand and your body covered head to toe. Your heart sinks and your stomach constricts itself into knots. The storm has left its scar to rest here for over a year and a half. You know everything is ruined, but you are afraid to walk around so as not to disturb the memories of this family…”