Statten Island Survivor Gives Account of Her Survival
By Vincent Funaro , Christian Post Reporter STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — The Bible tells the story of Noah and his experience with the flooding of the entire Earth and how he was spared death through an ark God told him to build. But reading about something that happened thousands of years ago, or even just seven years ago in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina, could never compare to witnessing the devastation water is capable of producing in one's own backyard.
Through foolish pride, myself, many of my friends, and family members who reside by the New Dorp/Oakwood Beach area of Staten Island did not heed the warnings of Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who urged residents of our neighborhood to evacuate in anticipation of the destruction Hurricane Sandy was forecasted to cause this past Monday. And after Hurricane Irene's mild damage inflicted on our neighborhood last year, we just did not feel the need to leave, especially with the hype these storms often bring.
My father and I were examining our backyard when all of a sudden a noise louder than the 80 mph winds that were part of the storm flooded our ears. A wave of what seemed to be ocean water busted through our back fence carrying an opossum with it rushing toward the back of our house. At first I figured it was just an overflow of the swamp land in the back of my home. But I couldn't have been more wrong.
My father had already made his way to the front of our house and as I joined him I could never have been prepared for what I saw next.
It almost seemed like my street had been removed and replaced with a river that was carrying my car along with many of my neighbors' cars down the street. My 2012 Nissan Altima was actually lifted off the pavement and hurled onto the sidewalk by the waters that ravaged my block. A neighbor of mine even had to roll down her windows and swim out of her car since she could not open the door due to waters pushed up against it.
My next concern was what this water would do to our home. I dashed to our basement and immediately began bringing our valuables up to the second floor. The water in the back of our house started to leak into the basement through the side windows. I kissed most of my possessions down there goodbye and witnessed the destruction of many of my neighbors' homes and cars in the discomfort of my own living room.
My mother was horrified and we were stranded. She has a heart condition and could have potentially undergone a heart attack under these circumstances. My first concern was her life. Then a foul odor of what I believed was leaked gasoline penetrated the air in our home and my father and I were left dizzy and uncomfortable. All I could think about was how I could escape with Mom.
My basement continued to flood and the water got as high as 4 inches. I knew it was a matter of time before the whole room was under water and our first floor would start to fill up. I was completely lost scrambling for ways to escape this horror. By this time my car was completely submerged and my patience had just about run out. I ran out of choices and turned to the only person I knew could help.
I remembered when Jesus Christ calmed the storm when on a boat with his disciples. The next thing I remembered was him telling his disciples that we would do greater things than him.
So I walked down to my basement and asked Christ to calm this storm and not let any more water into our home. I walked back up my stairs and waited for God's response to my prayer. Thankfully, the wait was not that long as my father told me the waters had begun to recede. My car became visible and my backyard started clearing out. A miracle had occurred and we were thankful for God's protection. We were able to grab a pump from our pool once the water had gone and used it to remove the flood from the basement. Aside from losing a car, my immediate family made it through the hurricane without a scratch.