How To Be Helpful: A Post-Sandy Interview With Nurse Kathy Page

Grace Limoncelli: Grade 7

Over six months ago, Superstorm Sandy struck the East Coast, putting Long Islanders and many others in the dark and damaging homes and property. Nurse Kathy Page was among those of us in the Buckley community hit hardest by the storm.

Her house was completely flooded, requiring reconstruction that was aided in part by funds from this year’s Halloween Dance that were given to help Nurse Page and her husband with their clean-up efforts. As a follow-up, in April, we interviewed Nurse Page about her Sandy and rebuilding experiences. Here is our conversation:

1. What was the hardest part of Sandy for you?

The hardest part was not knowing if the insurance would cover everything. We had to get past losing belongings and start worrying about how to fix our home.

2. Of everything you lost in the storm, what do you miss the most?

I miss the comfort of belongings, furniture and things I was accustomed to. I miss shelving, closets, cubbies and places in which to put things. Once I found out that my blow dryer was destroyed, I knew my house was 100% destroyed. I miss my husband’s clothes.

3. How is the rebuilding process progressing?

Excellent. My husband is a carpenter. He was able to do most of the reconstruction work in 90 days.

4. So you are back in your home?

Yes. We moved back in 90 days after the storm. We stayed with my daughter while we were rebuilding. Only the finishing touches and outdoor work need to be completed.

5. Were all of your neighbors’ houses destroyed?

Yes. Everyone in the neighborhood was affected. The neighborhood looked like a war zone. Everyone’s belongings were scattered all over. Some people were not as lucky as we were and are just now getting back into their homes. Once everyone is back, we are planning to have a huge bock party to celebrate our recovery.

6. When did you find out that your house was lost?

My neighbor called us and told us that our front door was pushed wide open. Just that picture in my mind would have given me a nightmare, all the water 3’11’ gushing in. I would think, what if the door was shut? But that would not help; it would have flooded anyway. When we drove in, we took the neighbor’s truck, because the water was still so high.

7. What helped you get through the experience?

Being here at Buckley. Being with the kids made all the difference. I could see that I could get through this. Buckley made me see the light.

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