The “eerily quiet” (as a friend so correctly described it) video below was shot by my son yesterday (Wednesday) morning in Pensacola, Fla., after nearly two feet of rain pounded the Alabama and Florida Panhandle gulf coast.
He’s currently there training as a Navy student pilot and when, due to the weather, his training was cancelled for the day, he and three housemates (also Navy and Marine aviators) joined with many other Pensacola and gulf-coast residents in using kayaks and other small boats to help police and other first-responders transport and evacuate people who were stranded by the rising water. (After three years on the Sewanee Fire and Rescue Squad, my son is one of those people who head towards fires.) The street flooding in the video, due primarily to overwhelmed drainage systems under the unprecedented rainfall, subsided during the day, but the damage was severe in many areas. (My son and his friends’ rental house was not flooded. Also, my other family members along the coast are okay.)
Also: As I’ve written on this blog many times over the years, I’ve been told by experts in post-disaster first-response that the best way to help when not on the scene, “When disaster strikes someplace else, first send money.”