Monthly Archives: February 2008

Katrina Connection officially announces blog, signs with UEPGC

NEWS RELEASE

New Katrina Website Adds Blogs, Signs with Urban Entrepreneur Partnership (UEPGC)

New Orleans, LA, February 29, 2008 — A New Orleans area survivor who helped create the Red Cross missing persons database immediately after Katrina recently purchased a domain, www.katrinaconnection.com, which served as an info and missing persons portal after the hurricanes, giving survivors of hurricanes Katrina or Rita and concerned citizens a novel new way to network, interact, get current affairs, and now blog.

The startup website already had a forum and offers news feeds, news features, helpful resource links, pictures with stories from survivors today, and Katrina-related videos. Now it includes a blogging section called the “TalkBox” where anyone can “Blog ’til their heart’s content”, said the site owner, Wayne Filmore. “The site already offers welcome media alternatives for us hurricane survivors, and I’ve found most other people who’ve been through it don’t mind talking about it, either…in fact, we need to”.

The former Katrina evacuee said “When I personally reunited that child and mother – or husband and wife – in different cities after Katrina, it was always such an emotional, intense feeling for me that it brought tears to my eyes, although we had well over 3000 evacuees in the shelter I worked out of. If this website only reaches 10% of the million people who evacuated, and brings together or helps only 10% of that many people, I’ll feel like it’s accomplished something.”

Katrina Connection recently signed with the Urban Entrepreneurial Partnership Gulf Coast (UEPGC), which is part of a White House-sponsored minority small-business initiative for business development, and is seeking feedback and partnerships with several universities on surveys and pertinent documentation of hurricane survivors.

“What I need now is for hurricane survivors and just anyone who cares to explore the whole site, start blogging, and interact with me”, said the new web publisher. “I want other Katrina or Rita survivors to understand they don’t have to take the online abuse or hear only the negative views, that they have another way to reach out for people they haven’t seen or heard from in over two years; that they can speak their mind on the internet – to know there is an alternative out here, with a connection to available resources that may even be able to help them, or they may not even be aware of.”

For more information, visit www.katrinaconnection.com, or e-mail i...@katrinaconnection.com.

Farewell to the Chief

I’m so sad about Warren McDaniels. He was a good person, and a great fire chief. I’ll miss him dearly. For those who don’t know, here is the funeral info:

Former N.O. fire chief lies in state today

by Valerie Faciane, The Times-Picayune

Thursday February 28, 2008, 7:30 AM

The body of Warren McDaniels, the city’s first black fire superintendent, will lie in state at Gallier Hall today from noon until 5 p.m., followed by a wake service at 6 p.m.

On Friday, a second viewing will be held from 8 to 8:45 a.m at Gallier Hall, followed by 9:30 a.m. Mass. After Mass, McDaniels will be honored with a traditional fire department ceremony at the department’s headquarters, 317 Decatur St. That ceremony will include a bell ringing and final salute from fellow firefighters.

Burial will be in the Biloxi National Cemetery in Mississippi.

Mr. McDaniels, a 33-year veteran of the fire department, died Sunday of cancer at River Region Hospice. He was 63.

He was appointed to the top job at the New Orleans Fire Department by former Mayor Sidney Barthelemy in 1993 and served until his retirement in 2002.

Mr. McDaniels is survived by his wife, Betty; two sons, Warren McDaniels Jr. of Guyana and Byron McDaniels; eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

short holiday

yesterday you said that death took a holiday from New Orleans. with no killings for 15 days..ha! I didn’t beleive u because i remember hearing about a lady who got run over by some white guys trying 2 steal her purse last weekend. THAT was a murder. Then I saw it was on Ames in Marrero, and that’s in Jefferson, not in the city limits. so I called the TV station and sure enuff, they read it to me..they said they had got the info from NOPD. sorry for doubting u. And guess what? Not long after all this happened, they DID have a killing inside New Orleans yesterday…a double shooting. 1 dead, 1injured, inside a house. I guess that was a short holiday.

Death Takes A Holiday Away From New Orleans

New Orleans, one of the most deadly cities in America, shockingly overnight became one of the only places with no murders reported for the last two weeks, its longest non-lethal streak in a decade. WDSU TV reported the information from the New Orleans Police Department.

Now I dare to make a connection between this latest trend and a crime-fighting group I’m involved with. This new coalition involves local, state, and federal lawmakers, law enforcement, prosecutors, attorneys, clergymen, business people, educators, community activists, and ordinary citizens who meet at a local church. Some in the group have connections on and in the streets. The goals include combining prayer, planning, law enforcement, education, community outreach programs, and community action to fight crime.

We’ve heard it all before. Over the years, many forces have tried to defeat the element of crime in New Orleans, a pariah for a city that care forgot. A valued, historical city that a federal government forgot to care for. A truly loving city that’s portrayed as a model of decadence, poverty, corruption, and violence.

If we are to address crime in New Orleans, it will take the right, consolidated, moves. Not just talk, or a march on city hall, or finger-pointing. It will take prayer, coordination, planning, and people getting involved. Not taking the law in their own hands, but working with the law, not against it. And if they want to work for the law, well – that’s fine, too.

The well-intended motivation and determination of this new band of crimefighters has yet to be tested. But strangely enough, what makes this group seem to stand apart is that topics of discussion ironically appear to be – astonishingly and ironically – subtly addressed within weeks after each meeting.

For example, soon after a discussion about drug abuse, and availability of drugs, among them prescription pills, a raid of two “pain clinics” that distributed pills without prescriptions resulted in arrests and shut them down. At another meeting, one of the topics was an unnamed “most wanted” criminal. Within a week, police were issuing new public warrants for the arrest of a “most wanted” in the Christmas Day murders of two young men on an uptown street.

Then there was the “40-day moratorium” ( for the lent season) on murders in New Orleans, proposed by members of the crime-fighting group, which held its second meeting 15 days ago. Which brings me to the news that post-Katrina New Orleans should be proud of: FOR 15 DAYS THERE HAS NOT BEEN ONE MURDER IN THE CITY OF NEW ORLEANS, THE LONGEST NON-LETHAL STREAK IN A DECADE (disclaimer: at least up to the time of this writing). You do the math.

Nope, no one was killed after the NBA All-Star game (though there was an unrelated shooting miles away hours after the game). Quite a few other cities have reported murders, but for the city synonymous with bloodshed, maybe – just MAYBE – for once, with death hopefully enjoying a holiday away from the city, New Orleans can have something to really be proud of.

New Orleans Housing DOES NOT have to be THAT bad!!!

The housing situation in New Orleans does not have to be that bad. It’s being made worse by a status quo of individuals – some call them “businessmen” or “developers” who own or owned huge apartment buildings (not to mention HUD and the projects) AND who HAD or HAVE the moneY (AND OVER TWO YEARS IS ENOUGH TIME TO BUILD A HELL OF A LOT OF BUILDINGS WITH SIX BILLION IN RED CROSS AND GOVERMENT MONEY HELPING) These trolls of society take an ” I DON’T GIVE A DAMN” attitude.

PEOPLE WITH MONEY should be given power not only by what they do, but power or money should be taken away from them based on what they DON’T do.

I don’t care if  it’s from FEMA, the SBA, insurance companies (some of them included), and all kinds of governmen t subsidies and incentives,  or goverment contracts, a lot of millionaires were made richer by Katrina…How many apartment units can billions of dollars build? Or get repaired?

How many New Orleans-born renters – homeless only because of high rents and utilities from companies that call themselves trying to “recoup” their Katrina losses – are sleeping under bridges. And as bulldozers tear down not only the projects, but FAIR TO GOOD HOUSES under city demolition orders, further diminishing the housing stock and causing more homelessness, how many wrecking balls are hitting the walls of what could have at the very least been excellent temporary housing for many who otherwise wouldn.t have lived anywhere, let alone projects, and would have nowhere else to really call “home”

Looking for Lost Family in New Orleans

A reader from Colorado recently sent the following request. If you can help please register and post a reply or e-mail edi...@katrinaconnection.com:

Hi this is an S.O.S for I am looking for lost family and I am hoping that maybe you all can help me find them.. It starts like this my Mom Dixie Daugherty(Sluder) had an Aunt named Jean Daugherty (McLean) she was about 16-17 when she left home and moved down to New Olreans. Jean also had a daughter named Cherry Blossom Mclean and when Cherry was 16 she was using the last name Bango. When Cherry was 17-18 she had a little boy named Leo Bango Zigman. Cherry was born either in 1926-27 just here in the past few months someone told us that there is a Leo Bango Jackson that lives close to Cherry B Jackson 81 and her husband 80. We have been searching for Cherry for months and months we have pictures of her and Leo when he was 6 yrs old in 1951..Cherry’s adopted mom my cousin Jean was born in 1895 she’s dead now but we need to know where she’s buried and Cherry would know..Can you please help me? I know that Cherry B Jackson was and still is in New Orleans somewhere alon!g with her son Leo, he should be about 64 now…We have tried and tried to find her and I even placed an ad in Craigslist for New Orleans hoping someone would see my S.O.S I know that they are survivors of Katrina and I know that my cousin never left La she loved it there…Let me know something anything…
Terri

Katrina Survivor Vows To Return

A Katrina survivor recently sent this e-mail:

When the levees broke I was watching cnn in a motel outside of jacksonville, fl. I was living in biloxi for the past two years and thought n.o. was ok. I was worried about my “home away from home”.Then all hell broke loose when i found out the levees breached. My family all lived in arabi/st.bernard parish. Most evacuated but I wasn’t sure which ones stayed, if any. No connection with anyone for days. The longest 5 days of my life. I even called cnn for days leaving messages for someone to rescue my people in da parish. All they showed was the 9th ward. I didn’t know if anyone was there to help them. Most were ok. My aunt drowned. I’m thankful she was the only one that was there. Then the day Rita hit, my grandmother passed away. She was in southwest la in a shelter. We suspect she quit taking her medication. She couldn’t go through another storm. Now I live in long island, ny (lucky me) and don’t know when I’ll come home. I miss it dearly. There is no soul and no spirit here. N.O. is really a one of a kind place and I’m so proud to have been born and raised there. Now I make sure I cook my gumbo, red beans, crawfish pies (yes you can get frozen cra!wfish up here), and shrimp creole. We are a dying breed and I feel obligated to keep up the tradition for my children who won’t get the pleasure of growing up in n.o. I did have the pleasure of attending the last two mardi gras. This year I won’t be able to because of the date being so early. Its gonna KILL me not to be there. I’ll watch as much as I can on tv. I’ll be back soon before they demolish my childhood home in arabi. Everytime I’ve been there to see my old neighborhood, I make sure I take my Xanax. I’m also on anti-depressants. I’ve taken them for ten years but since Katrina I take ALOT more. So I’m kind of numb when I visit but I walk around with that knot in my stomach every day. I know you all know that feeling too well. God bless everyone and good luck!! I WILL return! No doubt about it! I was born in n.o. and I plan on dying there too. Til then its a waiting game. By LOST IN N.Y.

Show me how to BLOG

It’s a rainy, gloomy Sunday morning, and I should be in church like I was last Sunday, singing praise to God in the company of other souls who are looking for the same salvation we all need. But here I am sitting at a computer, tapping out words to anyone listening. Sure, I could come up with all kinds of not-good-enough excuses for not being in church, but the truth is I overslept.

No, I didn’t hit the streets last night, though sleep didn’t come until well after midnite. And I’d think the old excuse about not having something to wear gets kinda old in the Creator’s sight. And the weather – well, we could blame everything we can’t do in life on the rain.

Moving on to the subject I’d have at hand anyway after church, the rain in New Orleans most likely makes some Katrina survivors think about the year 2005, when all hell (I should say water) broke loose and didn’t send the city up in flames but down in water. And because so little yet so much has changed since then, it’s easy for me to draw comparisons.

So, filled with inspiration that’s so profoundly affected me since the inception of KatrnaConnection.com, here I am, trying to make some sense of this new world of blogging. In 2003, I sat at home recovering from a hernia operation a few weeks earlier, and learned from a five year old neice how to press a button to cut a computer on. Now, five years later in 2008, I sit here recovering from a back operation two weeks ago, trying to learn about this thing called a BLOG.

I guess I could be an editor, voice my opinions, and editorialize. That would be easy. But this blog section was not created only for that purpose. It is here for you. Show me how to blog.