Welcome to the City of the People

Published 3:56 pm Monday, September 1, 2008

For those of you who may not have noticed, we have several dozen new friends and neighbors in our fair city for the next few days.

Evacuees from Louisiana, Mississippi and South Alabama are strewn about Marengo County, seeking refuge from whatever effects Hurricane Gustav will have or has already brought to their homes.

These people are, in many cases, several hundred miles from home. They have no idea what’s happening to their belongings outside of what they see on television or can get in a brief phone call into friends and relatives who may have decided to ride out the storm.

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The cruel irony here is that Gustav made landfall nearly three years to the day after Katrina. Many of the people who have chosen to make Demopolis their safe haven this week were here three years ago.

It’s well documented the kind of devasation those people returned home to.

Yesterday, Gustav lost his head of steam and diverted slightly from Katrina’s path. This was good news, as good as this kind of news can get.

Alabama is the embodiment of Southern hospitality and we’re proud to lend a hand, or a friendly ear, to our neighbors in their time of need. We’re no strangers to hurricane and tornado damage, so we sympathize with your anguish.

Best of luck to you as you return home. I hope everything remains just as you left it and I hope you’ll return to our great city again.