Thu Aug 27 16:03:52 PDT 2015
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Remembering Hurricane Katrina: 10 Years Later
Toneshia Watkins

Michelle Michel was born and raised in New Orleans. "[I] had a really good job and you know I just thought life was great." She, like most other New Orleanians, heard the storm warnings, but didn't pay much attention. "The Parrish President came on television and said if you've decided that you're gonna stay, you better go get an ax because chances are, you'll be on the roof. And when he said that, I said, that's it, let's get out of here." August 28, Michel and four others packed three outfits, got in their cars and headed east. "We were on the road for 18 hours. It was really traumatic. It was very stressful. Not knowing where you're going, not knowing what's going on back home, so there's a lot of anxiety." Exhausted from their trip, someone uttered the words that changed Michel's life. "Somebody said on the road, at the Dothan exit, you might find a place to stay." The group got lucky and were able to stay in a hotel. "We were watching CNN to see what was happening back home and we woke up the next morning to see the levees break." "Ten years later and I'm still very emotional and sad for a lot of people that I know that suffered so much and some people who list their lives It was probably the worst disaster I've ever experienced in my life." Michel currently works for Living Hope Ministries and despite the circumstances, she is grateful for Dothan.

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