Wednesday, March 29, 2006

A Tragedy in Pearlington....

According to a report filed with me this morning by Mary-Lena Anderegg, the following occurred in the early hours today:

"This morning, about 3 a.m. one of the FEMA trailers burned here in Pearlington. A Mr. Strickland, in his sixties, died in the blaze. I don't know any more particulars than that, but please pray for his family and for this community."

Most of the people of Pearlington are still residing in their FEMA trailers. I remember back in the fall, as I was working 16 hours a day - as were many others - to get people off the ground and into a trailer. I also remember trying to keep in perspective the reality that the PRIZE then was a hastily-built trailer that was generally poor in quality and often had electrical issues and other problems. I don’’t know yet the circumstances of the fire, but it really doesn’’t matter.

I beg all of us to redouble our efforts to get the good folks of this town back in their homes. Let's not let Mr. Strickland’s death be in vain. Rather, let it put us on notice that the job is far from done and that the TRUE prize should be a return to normalcy as quickly as possible.

It’s the right thing to do and Pearlington is counting on us.

With sympathy,

Jon White

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