It was the morning of August 29, 2005 my wife, Nancy was at home in Biloxi, Mississippi while I was working in Chicago when Hurricane Katrina was predicted. We had been through hurricanes before and she was going to ride out this one. She had gotten out at 6 a.m. to take the dogs out. Then, she was going to get her coffee, read her newspaper, and watch Good Morning America. When she found the cable was off so she settled for her coffee.
About 6:30 A.M I called to see how she was doing. She said, “The wind is picking up and the cedar fence is shaking, but she felt no concern. About 6:45 our son, Tim, called to say he was evacuating from New Orleans. Nancy did not consider evacuating even though two of her close friends in nearby Long Beach had called to say they were. We had gone through storms before and she was not worried. About 6:50, as our son was telling her the storm had shifted and the tidal surge was coming toward our house, the phone went out.
Water started to come in through the French doors of the Florida room. In the living room, water was rising fast and a clock had fallen off the wall. The steel hurricane shutters began, as items floated out of her curio cabinet. Nancy went back to gather her purse for ID if she died and gathered up her cocker spaniel, Precious.
When the water was up to her knees, Nancy left the house. Reluctantly, she had to leave our three mastiffs, Dusty, Samson, and Tara behind. By the time Nancy got to the driveway the water was half-way up the height of the Dodge Caravan door. She saw Tara run out of the house and disappear underwater as she was carried Precious over her shoulder like a baby.
Nancy went through the neighborhood along their door eaves to stay out of the wind. It was sprinkling but the water was getting deeper as Nancy made it to the corner, from there she thought she could swim to the high school. She was concerned because the electrical lines had fallen and might still be live, but Nancy was not afraid because she felt God’s presence and there was a peace.
Nancy saw a friend’s house and she thought if she could get in and get to the second floor she would be okay. By that time the water was up to her lips and Precious was getting heavy. A block and a half away she saw people leaving a house. She called to them but got no answer.
Their neighbor had a boat on a trailer anchored to the roof of their house and Nancy put Precious in the boat and climbed up the ladder into the boat. She prayed for the rope to the house to break and for God to guide the boat to a safe place. The rope did break off and the boat, trailer, and all ran over flooded cars. The boat floated to a place across the street from the house where she needed to go to.
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