Five years after Katrina, victim moves forward in SWLA - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Five years after Katrina, victim moves forward in SWLA

by Brandon Richards bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC-TV) – Five years ago, most of us watched the heartbreaking scenes from Hurricane Katrina play out on TV screens, but for others who lived in the disaster zone, it was all too real.

Shawn Herndon had just started classes at McNeese State University. Two weeks later his childhood home took a direct hit from Katrina. Herndon worried about his family.

"I didn't even know where they went. I knew my dad had gone to, I believe he went to New Iberia; my mom… I had no idea. I just knew that she had taken my brother," recalled Herndon.

As Herndon waited to hear from his family, officials in Southwest Louisiana were busy dealing with an influx of Katrina evacuees.

"Our population here in Southwest Louisiana probably grew by 25,000," said Dick Germillion with the Calcasieu Parish Office of Homeland Security.

Less than a month after Katrina came Rita, which gave Herndon an excuse to return home to New Orleans to see the damage done by Katrina

"The kitchen was completely rotted out, the ceiling had caved in," said Herndon. "It was pretty hard walking through there again because you just remembered all the times you've had over nineteen years being in one place."

"Did Hurricane Katrina prepare us for Hurricane Rita? I think the obvious answer is yes."

And not only did Southwest Louisiana make it through those tumultuous weeks, so did Herndon.

Now a producer here at KPLC, he's decided to make Lake Charles his permanent home.

"I've taken a lot of the lessons I've learned from Katrina and Rita and applied them to where I'm going to live and how I'm going to live," said Herndon.

But he'll never forget life five years ago.

Copyright 2010 KPLC-TV.  All Rights Reserved.

  • Hawaii News Now headlinesNewsMore>>

  • Korea summit after all? Trump says 'everybody plays games'

    Korea summit after all? Trump says 'everybody plays games'

    Friday, May 25 2018 8:55 AM EDT2018-05-25 12:55:25 GMT
    Saturday, May 26 2018 11:36 AM EDT2018-05-26 15:36:39 GMT
    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File). FILE - In this Thursday, May 24, 2018, file photo, President Donald Trump speaks about North Korea before signing the "Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act," in the Roosevelt Room of the White Hou...(AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File). FILE - In this Thursday, May 24, 2018, file photo, President Donald Trump speaks about North Korea before signing the "Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act," in the Roosevelt Room of the White Hou...
    President Donald Trump is welcoming North Korea's statement that it was still willing to meet despite his cancellation of the summit.More >>
    President Donald Trump is welcoming North Korea's statement that it was still willing to meet despite his cancellation of the summit.More >>
  • Handcuffed Weinstein faces rape charge in #MeToo reckoning

    Handcuffed Weinstein faces rape charge in #MeToo reckoning

    Friday, May 25 2018 12:22 AM EDT2018-05-25 04:22:30 GMT
    Saturday, May 26 2018 10:16 AM EDT2018-05-26 14:16:18 GMT
    (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File). FILE - In this Jan. 8, 2017, file photo, Harvey Weinstein arrives at The Weinstein Company and Netflix Golden Globes afterparty in Beverly Hills, Calif. Law enforcement officials say Weinstein is expected to...(Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File). FILE - In this Jan. 8, 2017, file photo, Harvey Weinstein arrives at The Weinstein Company and Netflix Golden Globes afterparty in Beverly Hills, Calif. Law enforcement officials say Weinstein is expected to...

    Harvey Weinstein is expected to turn himself in to police in New York City early Friday following a seven-month investigation into sexual assault allegations.

    More >>

    Harvey Weinstein is expected to turn himself in to police in New York City early Friday following a seven-month investigation into sexual assault allegations.

    More >>
  • Emails show cooperation among EPA, climate-change deniers

    Emails show cooperation among EPA, climate-change deniers

    Friday, May 25 2018 5:03 PM EDT2018-05-25 21:03:01 GMT
    Saturday, May 26 2018 9:56 AM EDT2018-05-26 13:56:40 GMT
    (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File). FILE - In this May 16, 2018, file photo, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt testifies before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies on budget on Ca...(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File). FILE - In this May 16, 2018, file photo, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt testifies before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies on budget on Ca...
    Newly released emails show senior Environmental Protection Agency officials collaborating with a think-tank that dismisses warnings of climate change.More >>
    Newly released emails show senior Environmental Protection Agency officials collaborating with a think-tank that dismisses warnings of climate change.More >>
Powered by Frankly