Remembering Ivan

Found this Article on Hurricane Ivan and thought I’d share it with y’all…

PENSACOLA, Florida (AP) – Northwestern Florida marked the first anniversary of Hurricane Ivan with prayers and a multimedia theatrical remembrance Friday while tending to thousands who fled an even greater catastrophe.

Hurricane Katrina evacuees from Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama are in shelters, hotels and private homes in a region where hundreds of Ivan victims still remain in temporary quarters, including government travel trailers and mobile homes.

Ivan ranks as the United States` fourth-costliest hurricane, causing about $13 billion in damage, behind Hurricanes Katrina, Andrew in 1992 and Charley last year. It caused flooding and wind damage across the Southeast. Ivan killed 25 people in the United States – 14 in Florida – while 32 more U.S. deaths were indirectly attributed to the storm.

At Navarre Beach, about 25 miles east of Pensacola, restaurant owner Cheryl Rudzki said that after seeing what Katrina did, she`s no longer complaining about losing her home to Ivan and then getting battered again in July by Hurricane Dennis.

“My problems don`t seem like much compared to what`s happening there,” she said. “I lost a house, but at least I have a place to go to. I still have a community. I can`t imagine losing everything.”

Ivan`s center made landfall Sept. 16, 2004, at Gulf Shores, Alabama, just west of the Florida border with 120 mph winds and a storm surge of 10 to 15 feet. It was the third of four hurricanes that struck Florida last year – a record for the state.

An ecumenical service at Pensacola`s Olive Baptist Church was broadcast live, while “Hurricane Monologues” debuted Thursday night for a four-day run. Part of the show`s proceeds will go to Katrina relief. The production features 19 monologues accompanied by music, photos, video, and lighting effects.

Reminders of Ivan still scar the landscape, including piles of debris, gutted homes, empty lots where buildings once stood, eroded beaches and twisted road signs.

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~ by Steve L. on September 18, 2005.

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