Personal Narrative: How Hurricane Katrina Changed My Life

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I was born July 18, 1999 to my parents Joel and Kathy at Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. I was a month early, but I was such a large baby that the doctor said “if he came on time he would have driven us home”. My mom was thrilled to have her first and only child; she named me Dylan, after the son of Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee. My name was strongly debated by my Irish Catholic Great Grandmother, who insisted I be named after a saint. After a failed attempt by Father Tommy Conway to convince her of the great Saint Dylan, my mother agreed to give me the middle name Thomas. There is possibly one thing my mother loves as much as me, Southern Miss football, and from an early age she passed it down to me. At less than two …show more content…

We would go and do all kinds of things together and those days account for some of my earliest memories. As her first grandchild, we developed a great relationship that we still have today. When the time finally came for me to go to school, it was tough for my Nana to not have me at home every day, but for my parents they couldn’t be more proud of their little boy. My first years of school were great. I was fortunate to have my mother as my kindergarten teacher, but when first grade came so did my first life changing experience. On August 23, 2005, Hurricane Katrina struck the Mississippi Gulf Coast. That day I woke up, the skies a haunting grey, as the storm moved inland reports of flooding, strong winds, and even tornados came over the television, as my family prepared for the storm’s impact. Sadly, Hattiesburg got the worst Katrina had to offer. The eye of the storm moved directly over us, and when the eye wall struck is when my entire family wondered if it would be our final day on this Earth. At this point, the power had gone out and we sat in an eerie darkness, only equal to that of a war zone. The only sound we could hear was whipping of the wind and pounding of the …show more content…

I came home one day to see both of my parents sad. As a third grader, I didn’t completely understand at the time, but my father had been laid off from the job he’d had since his teenage years. My father had started at the age of eighteen as a student worker at Southern Miss, and after years of hard work he had been promoted to the manager of shipping and receiving on campus. When the recession struck, the need to save money resulted in his position being terminated. My father was without a job. My father loved that job and when he lost it, he changed. He found a new love, alcohol. He let his love for alcohol become an addiction. He would do anything for alcohol; he even had secret stashes when my mom had removed all the prior alcohol from the house. Quickly my father became a violent drunk and began to routinely beat my mother and me. He became unstoppable; no person could get him back on track so my mother, in an attempt to keep me safe, removed him from the house. Even my mother’s best efforts weren’t always enough, as my father constantly broke into our house. One day my mother and I came home and my father was waiting in our den with a gun. We walked in, he pointed the gun at us, and then back at himself. He couldn’t decide to kill my mother, himself, or just all of us. He had more hatred in his eyes

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