Tales of Hope

Damian Crockem worked as a cook in New Orleans before leaving to stay with family in the Philadelphia area. He plans on remaining in the area and hopes one day to open his own New Orleans-style restaurant. Damian knows that a little piece of New Orleans will always be with him and everyone who chooses to settle in different parts of the country and he hopes to bring that piece with him to his new home. View »

Eric McBride escaped New Orleans by car ahead of Hurricane Katrina with his ex-wife and son. He stayed in several locations along the way before making his way to Philadelphia and has found that aid has been easier to get as one travels farther from New Orleans. View »

Like many evacuees, Josephine Fleming waited out Hurricane Katrina from her home only to be evacuated once the floodwaters began to inundate New Orleans. Here she describes leaving her third floor apartment as rainwater from above and floodwaters from below threatened her and her daughter. Josephine has decided to stay in the Philadelphia area and is settling into an apartment in Germantown. View »

For Nolan Gray and several residents of New Orleans, the breaking of the levee set them on a long and in some cases perilous journey with no certain end. Nolan’s story begins with feats of superhuman strength, includes the kindness of strangers and ends with his unexpected arrival in Philadelphia. View »

Newlyweds James and Melissa Hagen fled the total devastation of Melissa’s small hometown in along the Gulf Coast in Mississippi and are looking forward to owning a home and settling in Philadelphia. Jim explains that the experience of Hurricane Katrina has given them an appreciation of how they are far from alone in having both the challenge and opportunity of starting anew. View »