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Thanks so much to all of you who have written. I've just recently gotten e-mail access again and have found the task of answering each one individually too daunting. My plan is to write a series of letters to all my friends and family who might be interested. These letters will detail my story of the storm and the amazing world of the New Gulf Coast - what life is like now in "Camp Katrina." This is the first in the series.
I want to begin by thanking all of you. Some of you sent kind thoughts and prayers, a thing we've come to value highly in these times. Others of you sent aid in many forms. You cannot know what this meant to people here. Three of the big heros (at least in my book) are my dear friends Lucy Keenan, her husband Drew Bruch and the indomitable Peter Kramer. The full story (and others about our area) can be found by clicking here. I don't know most of you who donated to make that trek by Lucy and Drew possible, but I'll be forever grateful. Those supplies arrived at a desperate time and spirits here were lifted by knowing that people outside cared. Your kindness and generosity will be remembered for generations.
But in speaking with various people around the country since then, I've come to realize that, despite some good news coverage of Mississippi, few people even have a clue as to what really happened here. Most of us here on the Gulf Coast, especially Hancock County where I live, feel forgotten. The majority of media attention has been focused on the theater of New Orleans. Gang members firing on rescuers and images of wholesale looting make for riveting viewing, while a community where people are quietly working together lacks hand-wringing drama. The truth is this: We on the Coast took the full force of Katrina's wrath and conditions are still years away from anything approaching "normal."
Coastal Community Watch