Bay St. Louis Residents Clean Up After Gustav

By Jeff Shepard - bio | email

BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - It's the day after Gustav in Bay St. Louis, and the sounds of generators and chainsaws are in the air. A.J. Reed is cleaning up the mud and muck in his carport.

"This is what transpired. It lapped over the foundation. It did minor damage to my place. But some friends came over and we've just about got that removed," Reed said, pointing to a downed tree.

Reed re-built his home to withstand a Category 3 hurricane, and moved back in last September. He stayed home for Gustav.

"It was fine. I don't necessarily recommend that people do that, but I made that calculated risk," Reed said.

While the storm surge in Bay St. Louis wasn't nearly as bad as it was during Hurricane Katrina, it did get rough for a while. The water came rushing over the sea wall, and pushed a boat into John Worrell's front yard.

"I had reports that it was in my yard," Worrell said. "But I didn't know it was that good of a boat. That's worth $23,000!"

Worrell elevated his Leopold Lane home to 21 feet after Katrina. Gustav didn't do nearly as much damage, but it did knock over a FEMA trailer around the corner on Dunbar Avenue.

On Good Street, Raymond Alphonso feels good that Gustav didn't do any major damage to his house, but he is getting tired of all the sweeping.

"If I have to go through this like this, it's not bad. If I have to go through this like Katrina, I may not be here," Alphonso said.

Debris from the Jordan River washed into Alphonso's front yard. He isn't ready to move just yet, but has given the idea some thought.

"You couldn't find a nicer place to live, if the darn storms would just stay away. Give us a break!"

And that's a sentiment shared by most in South Mississippi.