Remember Katrina; fear Rita

Here we go again. Just be thankful Illinois is not on a major coast.

At one point there were 20,155 survivors of Hurricane Katrina evacuated to Dallas, according to At 3 p.m. Thursday there were five left as they were all evacuated as another storm, possibly an even larger one, heads toward land. Dallas shelters are making room for a new number of people fleeing their homes in fear.

Moving from your home can be a big deal. Moving from a puddle that used to be your home can be a huge deal. Moving from a cot you have had to call your home for the last few weeks because you’ve lost everything you had is a different world altogether.

Wednesday night it seemed there was a possibility New Orleans was going to be in the path of yet another powerful hurricane, thankfully such fear has shifted.

But now, as Hurricane Rita approaches land, the fear sits in the eyes of Texans and those residing in western Louisiana. Rita is scheduled to hit land Friday evening and explode upon that region in a frighteningly similar way to Katrina.

Being a class five hurricane in the water, scheduled to hit land with similar-to-Kartina force, there stands to be a great amount of damage done to places such as Galveston and Houston, which resides slightly inland from Galveston. These are two more major cities of our country that stand a chance at being destroyed.

Houston is also one of the sites that reached out their hand and offered their city to the victims of Katrina.

“According to the latest head count, considered the most reliable to date, 8,066 hurricane victims are still stranded at the three Reliant Park shelters and the downtown George R. Brown Convention Center, down from an estimate of 25,400 just Tuesday,” states These people have been relocated after losing all they have and are now on the move again.

As Rita hits, all we can hope for is the same kind of care and generosity shown to Katrina victims continues. We must keep those victims in our minds and hearts, but at the same time, be ready to step up for our new victims. This is an example of two cases of absolute tragedy happening in rather close geographic proximity and within merely a few weeks of each other.

We must be prepared to see those heart-breaking images of broken lives and destroyed homes and be ready to do whatever we can to help victims of not only Rita, but also Katrina.

Just because Rita will be hitting land in merely a few hours, that does not mean the victims of Katrina have been cured of their woes. We can’t forget about those in need.

Rita stands to ravage another section of the Gulf Coast, and we in Illinois can only sit here and wait for it to happen. There will be a new number of needy victims to add to the already existing list. Let’s please keep them all in our minds as sometimes nature isn’t all that pretty.

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