The track said it all. Category 4 Hurricane Florence, the seemingly only major hurricane destined to make landfall, headed toward North Carolina. By the time it finally came ashore, it had dropped to a barely-there Category 1 hurricane. The one-two punch came first with the winds and associated storm surge. Then with the gobs of rain that fell, completely drenching—no, swamping—the southeastern part of my home state.
Where I live, we got lucky. We dodged a bullet, first in the winds dying off into a Cat 1, then with the path shifting.
Still, as a North Carolinian, more, a native of Fayetteville, it hurts to see my hometown with its downtown underwater.
It hurts to see Wilmington and New Bern, two historic cities on our coast, devastated and struggling.
It hurts to see a small town, Fair Bluff, under water for the second time in two years because the Lumber River overflowed its banks.
In my posts, I usually come up with what I hope are helpful suggestions based on what I’ve learned in this on-the-edge life I have.
I’m out of anything to say that wouldn’t come across to those who are hurting as meaningless platitudes.
Will I pray? Yes. I will. Will I try to help? As best I can, be it through sending food we didn’t use down there via Operation Airdrop running out of Raleigh-Durham International Airport or by hopefully heading down with a team or teams later this fall when rebuilding gets firmly underway.
The best I can do now is to stay out of the way and let first responders and disaster recovery experts who are onsite begin the initial phase as the waters recede.
As the news cycle drops us from the home page, don’t forget about us North Carolinians. We are a warm, loving, resilient bunch of people who have had our somewhat unfair share of scourging throughout the rest of the country over the past few years. We got a bloody nose from Florence. We’re struggling. Keep us in your minds, your thoughts, your hearts, and your prayers.
You’ll see. We’ll overcome.