(BAYOU LA BATRE, Ala.) Aug. 29 - It seemed no one along the gulf coast was spared the wrath of Hurricane Katrina. Four years later, cities and towns are making progress and rebuilding the lives they lost in one day. This time four years ago, Bayou La Batre resident Sam Mitchell wasn't sitting on his front porch drinking a cup of coffee. Instead, he was packing up his house and running from what soon would be one of the deadliest hurricanes in U.S history. Mitchell says, Because when it comes to hurricanes of that category, nobody in their right mind is going to stay in the area. Mitchell fled to Pensacola where his parents live. And came back a week later not knowing if his house was still standing. The devastation was just beyond belief...the amount of water that came into this town, being pushed by that hurricane was.....Katrina just literally destroyed the town. Only two houses in Mitchell’s neighborhood survived the hurricane; one of them his. Just down the road is a shrimp dock; Mitchell recalls when several boats were forced out of the water and onto dry land. “And not just a little ways. I mean, some of the shrimp boats were put literally a quarter mile from any water at all. It doesn't seem like its been that long. Mitchell’s stepfather john king remembers talking to Mitchell right before the hurricane hit. We were concerned and even though we knew his house was up above ground, we insisted he get out of Bayou La Batre with all that he could. Mitchell says the town has come along way in 4 years...but certain areas hit the hardest will never be the same again. Hurricane Katrina produced 16-foot storm surges in Bayou La Batre, which is the largest surges on record.
/ Source: WPMI-TV