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Eyes on Katrina

A South Mississippi hurricane journal

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Menge Ave. info 

Jim Mashek has just returned from waiting out the storm in Florida, and he files a report on his return to his home. It came in stages. The destruction. The emptiness. The folks going on with their daily lives, dealing with Hurricane Katrina on their own terms. I left the sleepy town of Chipley, Fla., at about 9 o'clock on Thursday, more than three full days after the killer storm changed life as we know it, while ending thousands of lives in Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama. I knew what to expect, or should I say, I thought I knew what to expect. Sometimes, you didn't even recognize the place. It was a sci-fi movie, a ghost town, whatever cliche you want to use. Ninety minutes after crossing the Alabama/Mississippi state line, I took a careful left turn onto Menge Ave. All the power lines, dangling or down. Oak trees, destroyed. A sign that read, "Friends and family only. Trespassers will be shot." Figured it was no time to join the Welcome Wagon. One destroyed building after another. I figured my place was gone. I figured right. The little Pass Christian House in which I have lived for 10 months or so was blown off its cinder block foundation. My neighbor, John, said the house survived Hurricane Camille. It had no chance against this sucker. It took some effort, but I got inside. Retrieved a few personal items. Might be able to get some more, if I can find my desk. Maybe this weekend. Nice to be back with y'all. Now, we start over.

Thanks for posting this little tidbit. I grew up in a house on Menge Ave in Pass Christian that supposedly survived Camille. Nice to get a window into the area that I love so much.
Be prepared for the next national hurricane or find another one that's similar. As the Boy Scouts say: "Be Prepared"!
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Don Hammack

Don Hammack is a staff writer for the Sun Herald. He can be reached at

Sara Greer

Sara Greer is a news assistant for the Sun Herald.

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