LAFITTE, La. (NewsNation Now) — Hurricane Ida is long gone, but the devastation and the cleanup remain an ongoing reality for many along the Gulf Coast four weeks later.
People are picking up the pieces and some folks still don’t have power, as it’s expected that there are going to be ripple effects from the storm for months.
NewsNation’s Aaron Nolan visited Lafitte, Louisiana, one of the hardest-hit towns about 20 miles south of New Orleans, where people lost nearly everything except the fighting spirit.
“Hurricane Katrina wasn’t quite this bad. It was bad, but it wasn’t like this,” resident Judy Wang said.
While the damage was extensive in the small Jefferson Parish community with a population of just 816, the city knows rebuilding is just something that will happen.
“I just had that big lump in my throat, ” Wang said.
Longtime resident Carol Perkins says she’s been through hurricanes before, but Ida is the worst. “I just knew that … either my house was going to be down or it was going to have mud in it.”
Ida flooded homes and businesses, but the storm didn’t dampen the spirit of those in Lafitte.
“You can’t knock the bayou people down. They come back up,” Wang said.
Another resident commented, “It is not even the American way here, it’s the Lafitte way.”
“If you’ve ever watched a community come together, it’s this community. They come together bigger, faster than anybody I’ve ever seen.”
The Gulf Coast is no stranger to very strong hurricanes, but people are extremely resilient down on the bayou where the damage exists and the hope remains.