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Hurricane Katrina- It's been 5 years-

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  • Hurricane Katrina- It's been 5 years-

    As I went out to feed the horses this morning, I heard their welcoming nickers and I thought about friends and strangers who lost horses as well as homes, barns and their jobs to Katrina five years ago today.

    If you still have horses, please give them an extra treat, or a pat or hug today in remembrance of those equines lost five years ago as a result of Hurricane Katrina, and to honor the sorrow their owners continue to experience.

    The lost of human life was high, but the number of equines lost was even higher. Some drowned in their barns and stalls, some in their fields, some were simply swept away and their bodies never found, and some waited days or weeks and died in deplorable condition because help arrived too late.

    The lucky horses were hauled out to safety before the storm, or were rescued in time while Katrina raged, or found quickly- with or without injuries- just after the storm passed. Some waited days or weeks for help, that did reach them in time.

    Some were reunited with frantic owners, and some were not. Some were later adopted or bought at auctions by new owners -- others survived the storm only to be bought and hauled to slaughter-- a tragedy, too.

    Some like my horses, endured almost 12 hours of frightening heavy rain and high winds, but didn't have to be uprooted from familiar surroundings and never missed a meal. For that I will be forever grateful.

    So hug your horse today, give him or her an extra treat or pat on the shoulder.

    And maybe make a donation to a charity that helps in time of disaster, or one that is still working to help people devastated by Hurricane Katrina- there are still people who need help-- even five years later.
    Laissez les bons temps rouler!
    Elysian Fields Farm--
    --An equine refuge

  • #2
    The Cincinnati Enquirer had an article this morning on humans who were uprooted:

    http://news.cincinnati.com/article/2...s-post-Katrina

    The transition away was hard for many people, and their animals.

    Were there really more than 1800 equids confirmed killed?
    HAS provides hospital care to 340,000 people in Haiti's Artibonite Valley 24/7/365/earthquake/cholera/whatever.
    www.hashaiti.org blog:http://hashaiti.org/blog

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    • #3
      I remember that day so well, I was driving a horse to NCSU in the rain... When I went in they thought the flooding would be minimal and then.. Of course when I came out it was a tragedy unfolding.

      So sad for everyone involved. We gave $ then, thank you for the reminder to dig deeper.
      "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
      ---
      The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Losses probably exceeded the estimated 1,800

        Originally posted by HorsesinHaiti View Post
        Were there really more than 1800 equids confirmed killed?
        I think as time went on, it was found that even more than that had been killed. Remains (equine, human and other) are still being found-

        There was a story a couple of months ago about yet another set of human reamains being found in New Orleans, so it is not surprising that more animal remains are yet to be found, or even reported.

        I have a friend who told me about a horse farm near the coast in Mississippi that was "totally wiped off the face of the earth."
        Not only did the owner, who was a widower drown, but the ground was literally scoured clean of his home, barn and other buildings. Bodies of dead horses identified by their brands were found as far away as five miles from that farm in the days following Katrina. I don't think all of his horses were ever accounted for, and only two- a mare and foal were found alive.

        There was a small town called Pearlington, MS that was washed away-- all that was left were slabs with pipes sticking out or heaps of lumber. Imagine- a whole town-- just gone!
        Laissez les bons temps rouler!
        Elysian Fields Farm--
        --An equine refuge

        Comment


        • #5
          I remember it like it was yesterday! I didn't have my horse then, but I know of plenty of barns that either got flooded or roofs torn off. Very sad
          Once I did get my horse I evacuated him to a city 3.5 hrs north for Hurricane Ike (or was it Gustav? There's so many they all start to run together!).
          Katie

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          • #6
            Sadly, I have a few old geldings who were found together after Katrina. Clearly they were good friends and had been well cared for. Over the years, I have come to realize that they were the treasured animals of someone cause they dont make horses like this often. There owner would have looked for them, absolutely. In fact, I imagine they survived and there owner didnt. They were at some holding grounds for a long time and no one ever came looking. They were too well treated for someone to have forgotten those old men. Well maybe they presumed them dead but................they still stand here.
            Our horses are not seen as the old and disabled they may have become, but rather as the mighty steeds they once believed themselves to be.

            Sunkissed Acres Rescue and Retirement

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            • #7
              I remember Katrina like it was yesterday, and I was 1000 miles away watching from my little 20in TV in awe and horror. My heart goes out to those lost, human and animal, and the lives that were changed forever. Bless those of you who opened your hearts and homes to take in loved pets that lost their humans and homes.

              Comment


              • #8
                Wasn't there a homeless man that went to the city stables and rescued horses out of the flooded stalls? I believe he had them tied up in a park caring for them when people were able to actually make it in to check the damage.

                I believe Sonesta housed a horse or 2 saved from that area.
                Rhode Islands are red;
                North Hollands are blue.
                Sorry my thoroughbreds
                Stomped on your roo. Originally Posted by pAin't_Misbehavin' :

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                • #9
                  I was just thinking about my experience in Mississippi and the huge outpouring of support from COTHers back then. I http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...for+katrinaent and dug up the old thread: and realized I started it 5 years ago - today....
                  Y'all ain't right!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    My last assign for the government was working the aftermath of Katrina. At least until late December the body of horse hung in the top of tree just north of Boothville on Hwy 23. This was about 30 feet off the ground.

                    In contrast I have little Benny Baby horse that I found about 1/2 mile away setting by my computer...this is where every house or building that was supposed to be on the land was in the water and all the boats were on the land.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Whatever happened to the poster "OldLadyOnA TB"? She helped out a lot down there, IIRC. I haven't seen her post in ages.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The fire chief for the fire station I volunteer for was killed in a car accident on his way down to Louisiana so even though the hurricane itself didn't kill him it was definitely related. Our station had people down there for several weeks. That was before I joined but I would love to go if something like that happened again. I hope the lessons learned from that catastrophy were well learned and not to be repeated.
                        McDowell Racing Stables

                        Home Away From Home

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                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          I know what you mean! Hoping we don't get one this year

                          Originally posted by Brown Horse View Post
                          I remember it like it was yesterday! I didn't have my horse then, but I know of plenty of barns that either got flooded or roofs torn off. Very sad
                          Once I did get my horse I evacuated him to a city 3.5 hrs north for Hurricane Ike (or was it Gustav? There's so many they all start to run together!).
                          I have friends who still haven't been able to rebuild and move back yet. And there are two more hurricanes out in the Caribbean right now-- at at this time of year - it sends chills down my spine.

                          I remember Audrey as the first one I ever experienced. Then there was Hilda and Betsy - N.O. flooded during Betsy. And then Camile in 1969-- the worst until Katrina- but there was Elena and Andrew before Katrina. Rita after Katrina and Ike and Gustav. Gustav was the last do do lots of damage up here- a week without electricity and lots of trees down-- again.

                          But things were better organized after Katrina, and horse owners in N.O. and other places south began getting their horses out about 5 days before Gustave hit. I had three extra horses here because of Gustav.

                          You are right so many they all run together-- and they do seem to be coming more often. Katrina took out a pecan tree that was over 150 year old here. I saw it fall from the back gallery of my son's house. We had the horses loose so they could either use the sheds or not as they chose. The mare in that pasture was huddled close to the gate- her grown gelding son decided to run away from her toward the tree- just as the roots gave way. It was a loud cracking sound like a giant bullwhip.

                          I watched in frozen horror as he ran right under the branches of that huge falling tree. It looked like it happened in slow motion, then I could not see him after that. My son put on a rain suit and wanted to head out-- I was was afraid that blowing debris or another tree on the fence line might get him, too.

                          But he went. And then I could seen him struggling against the wind- leading the gelding back toward the gate where his dam was. John said that when he got to Jacques, Jacques was just staring vacantly and shaking all over. He almost went down when John first tried to lead him back.

                          He was convinced that Jacques was in shock at almost being crushed by that pecan tree. For the rest of the storm Jacques huddled by his dam like he was still a little foal-- but we all got through okay. If that pecan had fallen in any other direction, it would have taken out the largest run-in shed, or at least one fence.

                          Way it was, it fell in the only direction that did not cause damage- due south. We had six large trees down on the back fence where there is a patch of woods that belongs to the school board. The pines in that patch looked like a bunch of pick-up sticks- down in every direction. It was their trees that took out our fence.

                          We lost only that one old pecan- the biggest tree on our property. Tuesday morning we were stringing battery-powered hot wire to make sure the horses didn't try to walk through where the trees had laid the fence down. We came in for a break around one and heard on the battery-powered radio that the levee had failed in N.O and much of the city was under water.

                          After Katrina, my son decided to cut down two big old water oaks in the front of the property- I hated to see them go. But then Gustave came, and laid six old oaks down along our street. The wind laid them out due east-- those two oaks would have demolished both houses on our property -- and my son's is 200 year old this year.

                          Believe me, I'm sure praying we will be spared a storm this year.
                          Laissez les bons temps rouler!
                          Elysian Fields Farm--
                          --An equine refuge

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I can remember watching the news reports and just being chilled by them. It was so awful just to watch- I can't imagine how bad it was to actually go through it.

                            One of the big newspapers ran a picture of a dead horse in a tree- it haunts me still.
                            Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!

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                            • #15
                              I was physically ill watching the coverage. I couldn't eat or sleep before we hit the road. As bad as it was, being there (in Mississippi) and getting to actually do something really helped me.....
                              Y'all ain't right!

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Originally posted by kookicat View Post
                                One of the big newspapers ran a picture of a dead horse in a tree- it haunts me still.
                                I remember that picture as well- When I first saw it, I thought what a horrible way for its owner to find out what had happened to his/her horse. I can't imagine how awful that must have been.

                                And that poor horse, struggling in all that debris-strewn water until it drowned.

                                It was photos like that, and actual bodies of dead horses that I saw a week later while trying to help friends caught up in all that find theirs-- that prompted me make my original post about remembering Katrina five years later.

                                I do have one Katrina survivor myself. He wasn't claimed, and was sent to a big auction that was held in Mississippi. He almost was bought for slaughter-- He is a half-brother of a well-known walking horse that competed in Germany and stands at stud there.

                                He is much safer here even though he is still in a Gulf Coast state. I live far enough inland on high ground so hurricanes don't cause any flooding here that would be a danger to livestock like tidal surges or floods caused by levee breaches.
                                Laissez les bons temps rouler!
                                Elysian Fields Farm--
                                --An equine refuge

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by snkstacres View Post
                                  Sadly, I have a few old geldings who were found together after Katrina. Clearly they were good friends and had been well cared for. Over the years, I have come to realize that they were the treasured animals of someone cause they dont make horses like this often. There owner would have looked for them, absolutely. In fact, I imagine they survived and there owner didnt. They were at some holding grounds for a long time and no one ever came looking. They were too well treated for someone to have forgotten those old men. Well maybe they presumed them dead but................they still stand here.
                                  I have tears in my eyes now...
                                  *friend of bar.ka

                                  "Evidently, I am an unrepentant b*tch, possible trouble maker, and all around super villian"

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Where were they found? Just curious?

                                    Originally posted by snkstacres View Post
                                    Sadly, I have a few old geldings who were found together after Katrina. Clearly they were good friends and had been well cared for. Over the years, I have come to realize that they were the treasured animals of someone cause they dont make horses like this often. There owner would have looked for them, absolutely. In fact, I imagine they survived and there owner didnt. They were at some holding grounds for a long time and no one ever came looking. They were too well treated for someone to have forgotten those old men. Well maybe they presumed them dead but................they still stand here.
                                    Hi- It is so good that you took them so thy could stay together. How many are they? I am curious about where they came from-- do you know where they were found? - MS or LA? or elsewhere?

                                    My gelding came from around Pearl River or Picayune MS originally, but was sold at an auction in Hattesburg. He was a stallion found wandering loose after the storm. He was impounded by the sheriff and held the required length of time. He is obviously well-bred and very well-gaited.

                                    I do know that suposedly my horse's owner was presumed dead by drowning, and his grown children provided info to the sheriff about him and the mares, but they lived out-of-state and were not interested in reclaiming him or about a dozen mares found with him -- or paying the impoundment and care fees. I never heard any more than that.

                                    Based on his dam's name- a woman who breeds TWHs provided me with pedigree background on her line and her registered offspring. One of his half-brothers really is a successful gaited show horse who stands at stud in Germany.

                                    A record of Merlyn's registration with TWHBEA could not be found and his breeder may not have registered him with them, but with a different registry.

                                    But it doesn't matter to me. He is going to live out his life here safe from slaughter and relatively safe from more hurricanes.

                                    Katrina changed or affected deeply the lives of millions on the Gulf Coast forever. That's one thing that is sure.
                                    Laissez les bons temps rouler!
                                    Elysian Fields Farm--
                                    --An equine refuge

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Ah yes Katrina......my paint was on pasture and the fence broke in north covington and he was running the mares and the colt up and down Lee Rd.....the neighbir's said ie was a scene, My house that we had just bought 1 month prior was unharmed......40 pine trees on my 2 acres, but other then that we got lucky!!! That storm was a mess.
                                      No Worries!

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