PASS CHRISTIAN, MS (WLOX) - The man who led the state through the massive post-Katrina rebuilding and recovery got a chance to reminisce with some coast storm survivors on Thursday.
Former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour visited several locations to sign copies of his new book: "America's Great Storm". One stop was in Pass Christian.
From Pass Christian's mayor, to admirers from as far away as Jackson, they lined-up at "Pass Christian Books" to meet former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour.
"Have not met him before, but it's something I've looked forward to. He led so well after Katrina," said Margaret Murdock of Gulfport.
The former governor signed copies of his book "America's Great Storm: Leading through Hurricane Katrina".
The book is a personal memoir of his role in the aftermath of the disaster, the lessons learned, and the numerous people who, as he once said, "hitched up their britches and went to work".
"What's so great about this is what made me write the book, the attitude of the people of Mississippi, strong, resilient, self-reliant people, and Katrina brought out the best in them. Their spirit and character was revealed and that's a story that people need to hear," said Barbour.
For people like Alice Perrier, who lost their homes, it was a chance to personally thank the governor.
"I enjoyed it very much. He's a very gracious person. I told him what a good job I thought he had done after the storm and that my daughter sent her regards," Perrier said.
"We owe him a debt of gratitude here on the coast. He came down and he set us headed on the right path, and I think we've come back in ways that are pretty remarkable," said Murdock.
Attendees left feeling grateful Barbour is still telling Mississippi's Katrina story ten years later.
"He did a great job getting a lot of money for Mississippi. We got the grant, $150,000 grant, with no strings attached," said John Curren of Pass Christian.
Barbour also signed copies of his book at Beau Rivage in Biloxi and "Bay Books" in Bay St. Louis. On Friday, he will be at USM's Gulf Park campus.