Gulfport Neighborhood's Katrina Shock Wearing Off - - The News for South Mississippi

Gulfport Neighborhood's Katrina Shock Wearing Off

The debris pile in front of Kermit and Vida Mitchell's house is nearly a year in the making. The family's been trying to come to grips with what they lost to Katrina.

"Shock," said Kermit Mitchell. "It just took us awhile to get our thoughts together as to what we wanted to do."

The Mitchells says difficulties in getting their Gulfport house repaired didn't help their morale.

"We had times when we sat for two or three weeks or longer with nothing happening," he said. "You tend to fall back into depression in that time. You wonder is this ever going to happen."

The Mitchells say the depression they felt infected much of their neighborhood. They say the many storm debris piles along Washington Avenue come from the houses of families who have had trouble adjusting to life after Katrina.

Vida Mitchell said, "Some people have not been able to work themselves out of a state of shock and despair. They have walked away and they have not been able to go back, look back."

Nearly one year after Katrina, the Mitchells can see some of their neighbors getting back their sense of hope for the future.

"I think there's many people that have realized how much strength they have, that they never knew that they could cope with something like this."

The Mitchells say they've spent 30 great years in Bayou View and have no intention of moving. 

Many cities are urging people to put their debris on the street by August 28th. After that, FEMA will no longer reimburse the cost of pick up.  

by Danielle Thomas

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