OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - Life is peaceful for the Miner's. Maryalice gives swimming lessons to small children; John likes to tend to his plants. Their Lovers Lane home was beautiful before Katrina. The day after, it was gone. "It was heartbreaking," Maryalice recalled. "Our dog was looking for his friend the kitty cat and when he couldn't find her, he began to cry and that's when we broke down and I realized everything was gone."
Would they rebuild and start over again? John had the answer: "No doubts at all."
The couple, who has been married for 69 years, had always been drawn to the waterfront piece of property they consider heaven on earth. "We didn't really want to go anywhere else. Where else could you find such a beautiful location. The bay on one side, the bayou on the other," said the couple.
The Miner's own a 28-year-old iconic toy store in downtown Ocean Springs, where they rode out the storm. It was the store that guided their decision to stay and start a new life in a new home, higher and stronger than the old one.
Longtime customers made sure the pair did just that. "We didn't really have time to feel sorry for ourselves. They all came to buy new toys for their kids and they wanted a hug and we really didn't have much time to think," noted Maryalice.
Despite the stress and strain of going through Katrina, the devastating storm made John and Maryalice Miner even closer. "I love him more every day. Yes, I certainly think there's been a bond, a storm bond. We do enjoy life," added Maryalice.