Tropical Storm Danny was upgraded to Hurricane Danny as Katrina’s 10th anniversary looms. Danny gained category 1 hurricane status reaching 75 mph winds. Danny is about 1,000 miles off Caribbean Islands coasts, reported CNN on August 20. Danny is the first Atlantic storm of the 2015 season to reach hurricane. He’s a little late in the season, but if he makes landfall, it could coincide with Hurricane Katrina’s 10-year anniversary on August 25.
Katrina wreaked devastation on the gulf coast in 2005 for a period of days. Katrina had the highest death toll of any storm since the Okeechobee hurricane in 1928. 1,833 souls were lost in Gulfsport and Pass Christian, Mississippi. But the most by far died in New Orleans with a proportionally large number from the lower ninth ward. Katrina had damage totals four times as high as Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Residents in other states have managed a pretty good comeback after that storm. But there are parts of New Orleans that have not “come back” and many never will. The diaspora were flung to the winds, the flotsam and jetsam from the catastrophic storm washing up in other parts of Louisiana, Texas and neighboring states.
If you go to Treme, you will still see homes covered in vegetation a decade later. Some still have Katrina X’s. The lower ninth is rebuilding, but its not the former residents that live there. It’s getting a gentrified makeover. People are snapping up land that was all but obliterated. But homes are few and far between. Some roads are virtually undrivable. Others, marked only by bent street signs,disappear into dense jungles were once were streets. The only way you know were homes were is by crumbing driveways or perhaps a porch. There is a beautiful new youth center in the ninth ward, nicer than anything there before Katrina. The homes are nicer, too. The new ninth ward will look very little like the old one Katrina washed away. And the population will too.
News stations will host Hurricane Katrina 10-year anniversary specials in the upcoming days. Anderson Cooper, Shepard Smith and Robin Roberts were personally involved and will host specials. Smith, along with many others, has loudly decried the Bush administration for dropping the ball on New Orleans. He says there a decision was made not to save some people. When criticized for getting emotional, he says after watching babies and old people dying for four days with no help, he suggests no one wants to “f–king remember that.” Smith isn’t alone in that thought.
And every time a new hurricane forms, “Katrina” is on everyone’s lips.