[StBernard] Safe to Move Back?

Westley Annis westley at da-parish.com
Sun Feb 18 18:41:43 EST 2007


I totally understand your fear of the oil spill area and I respect your
decision not come back, however I just felt like it was made with bad
information or with rumors. I lived in the oil spill area (Plaza near Judge

Perez) and I decided not to move my family back there so we bought my sister

in laws house on Mehle in Arabi and renovated it, we are in our house as of
last week and we are so glad to be back home in da parish. We have been
renting since January 2006 on Paris Road, when you live down there everyday
you see the progress that takes place everyday and for a Parish devestated
18+ months ago a whole lot of progress has been made and yes plenty more
still exists.

Funny you should mention Rockey Vaccarella, I am tryping this message from
on board the Royal caribbean Grandeur of the Seas, we are currently in the
Gulf of Mexico and Rockey is part of our group of 60 people, about 40 from
St. Bernard. Yes Rockey said most of those things you listed in your
message and Rockey rebuilt and moved into his house 4 weeks ago, he is so
happy to be back home and is opening a restaurant in St. Bernard. He has
not been given any false information and made a decision to re-populate the
place he loves, the same for me.

I get so disappointed when I hear good people like yourself decide they are
not coming back, we need you back helping us make this home again. We are
going to do it with or without you but I am sure the parish would be better
with you.



Judging from the lack of movement back in the Murphy Oil Spill area, I'd
gather that this area of Chalmette carries with it the most fear of living
in that area. Take for instance that I was an avid gardner, tilling the
earth and eating my own grown veggies.

I feel that I can never trust eating food on the grounds that were
contaminated by the spill. I never tried to eat from utensils/pots, etc. or
wear the clothes (even if all were cleaned immensely) that also were

I'm sure most of St. Bernard can attest to their own personal fears of
returning. But one thing comes to mind, besides the oil spill area. This
evening, I saw a video on You-Tube by Vaccarelli. He lamented with each
second passing while he videoed the storm and water rising to second
stories. His anguish and disbelief was followed continuously with
"kick-in-da-pants and a prayer that this would never happen to him again. He
shouted to people cutting through rooftops and seeing their boats, batteries
floating away/damaged. Through his anxiety, he expressed his feelings
sincerely as he realized his danger of being in a storm he should not have
encountered. Tough guy or not, he's made that decision in his moment of
tragedy. We wonder how he feels today?

God be with people who feel they will get through still more future
hurricanes. Whether it's noble to look disaster in the eye and spit or
stupidity, depends upon which angle an individual uses to defeat Mr.
Destiny. One thing we know when it comes to disasters: it's not IF, but
WHEN. Everyone should be cautiously optimistic whether they decide to stick
it out in St. Bernard or face other situations away from what is/was--their


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