[ESIP-all] Re: Katrina: Update on my family's situation.

Richard Troy rtroy at ScienceTools.com
Mon Sep 5 16:46:52 EDT 2005

Hello Everyone,

well, I got the call this morning: My sister Denise, her daughter Heather
and grand daughter Destiny are all OK. Here's a little bit of their story:

They had gotten away from the storm in a borrowed camper, but what I
didn't know was that the owner of the camper was with them, driving. This
person is reportedly named Shovel. Hey, it's the deep south and people
there sometimes are named after tools. -shrug- Anyway, Shovel is
apparently such a genius that later that night, instead of continuing
east away from the storm, he decided to turn around and head back "home,"
even though the storm wasn't over yet.

Since the worst was past, they survived the storm OK, but the next day
Destiny's puppy, tethered to the camper door, was yapping at passers by
and Shovel, apparently annoyed at the noise, decided to kill the dog. I
guess when your house has blown away, you can always take your
frustrations out on the dog... Well, Denise wasn't going to have any of
that and stopped him. Shovel then gave my sister an ultimatum: Either let
him kill the dog or the three girls would be thrown out of the camper - in
my sister's words, "he threw us out of the car", along with their few
meager belongings, of course.

There's nothing left to speak of there - not that there was all that much
to their location before Katrina - and being "out on the street", truly
homeless in the disaster area obviously isn't a good choice. So without
any other good choices in the area, they walked, occasionally hitched a
ride and eventually made it to Denise's ex-husband's mother's house in
Kiln, MS, where they are now all living in a tent in the front yard.

Eventually, some electrical service was restored in nearby Clinton, MS, so
yesterday she was able to collect the money we'd wired her. Then, today,
Kiln has gotten its telephone service restored and so she called.

I can't really stomach Shovel's actions, but it's oh so typical of men
from that part of the world. So, I suggested to my sister that she use
this as an opportunity to relocate herself to somewhere else, and then
mentioned to her some of the kind offers of assistance that people have
extended to her (through me). She sighed in agreement...

I want to thank everyone who has responded to my posts. Your kind offers
of assistance and other forms of support have been very important. These
three ladies are only at the beginning of their ordeal; They now have to
build their lives again, "from scratch."

With kind regards, and deep appreciation for your support,

On Fri, 2 Sep 2005, Richard Troy wrote:
> Hello All,
> Unfortunately, things are not good. As you may have read some days ago, my
> sister's home on the edge of Gulfport/Waveland, Mississippi was lost.
> Unfortunately, so is my sister...
> I'm the last of us who is known to have spoken with her. She called at
> dusk on the evening of the first day Katrina came ashore from a pay phone
> in Jackson, Alabama, to say she was driving a borrowed camper and had her
> daughter, Heather Troy, with her, along with Heather's year old daughter,
> Destiny. I know many of you have met Heather as I took care of her and
> brought her to an ESIP meeting or two...
> When she called, she said she was at a small truck stop which couldn't
> pump fuel because there was no electrical power. She said she was very low
> on fuel and wanted to continue to run from the storm. She said she was
> also out of money, but that was a secondary concern. We called each other
> several times while I contacted our father and arranged to have money
> wired to her via Western Union. I urged her to stay put for the night
> since she appeard not to be in flooding danger and she was at a known
> location - and there'd be food/beverage, etc, at the truck stop. She said
> she was afraid the camper would blow over in the wind.
> Nobody has heard from them since. She didn't call me in the morning as she
> promissed. The money hasn't been collected from Western Union. We've
> contacted the police and other authorities and she's on the list so if any
> aid workers help her, we'll get word.
> ...At least when I had them on the phone I had the foresight to also talk
> to Heather and I told both of them I love them... Small comfort, that, but
> in a situation like this, well, what can one say?
> Meanwhile, my father's home is likely flooded, so he has driven from
> Atlanta, where he happened by luck to be when Katrina came ashore, to his
> brother's house in Blowing Rock, North Carolina. He's safe, though he
> didn't bring with him any photographs or other valuables from his home as
> he didn't know Katrina was coming when he left.
> Also meanwhile, the city I grew up in, where my longest and best friends
> are, where my heart yet remains, is undergoing a most painful injury. To
> call it devastating seems pathetically under-stated. And there is so
> prescious little that I can do to help...
> Richard

Richard Troy, Chief Scientist
Science Tools Corporation
rtroy at ScienceTools.com, 510-567-9957, http://ScienceTools.com/

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