Dozens Gather At Camille Memorial For Poignant Ceremony

Mary Alexander and Fannie Alice Brown Bagg. They are among the names etched in stone and on many people's minds.  They were all victims of Hurricane Camille.

"Oh, it's next to my heart," Julia Guice said. "These people were people that was loved and adored by their families, and it's very touching for me."

Julia Guice spearheaded efforts to build the Camille Memorial at the Church of the Redeemer to honor the 131 dead and 14 missing. Hurricane Katrina shattered the structure. Now, it stands tall once again, with new marble walls, bearing freshly-engraved names.

"I don't know the people here, because they died 30 years before I came down here," said The Rev. Harold Roberts. "Yet, it's very moving.  And I did feel we were doing what we promised to do and that was to memorialize them."

More than two dozen people gathered at the restored memorial on Friday, to remember on the 38th anniversary of the disaster.

"It brings it back," Guice said. "I hope it affected everybody the same way. This is a warning. Hurricanes kill."

The memorial reminds us of lessons learned.

"Through Camille, God taught us and our children that we should always remember our core values," said Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway.

It also reminds us of the names that we should never forget.

"God bless all of you and may the victims of Camille rest in peace," the pastor said.

A $10,000 grant from the Peoples' Foundation helped pay for some of the memorial restoration. The Church of the Redeemer is still trying to raise money to offset the repair and clean-up costs. If you would like to help, call (228) 385-8383.