Spindly Bush Saves Miss. Police Officers

"WAVELAND, Miss. -- For five hours, 14 members of Waveland's police department held on desperately to a spindly bush as they watched the town they swore to protect being torn apart by Hurricane Katrina.

Debris shot past them; tin roofs fired up into the air; a shrimp boat swept past in churning sea waters as they clung to the 8-foot-tall bush. Blasted by a storm surge some say was 30 feet high Monday morning, this town got some of the worst of Katrina.

Three days later, the anemic-looking, red-tipped bush in front of the police department has become a shrine to Waveland's men and women in blue. There's now a hand-carved wooden cross placed in the bush to highlight its role in a remarkable story of survival -- a sign of hope as police go about the grim duty of recovering bodies and trying to help shocked survivors in the town of 7,000 about 35 miles east of New Orleans."

"You can see where there's no bark," said Lisa Parker, the chief's secretary. "That's where we were holding onto it."

Added patrolman Todd Blake: "The death grip hold."


After the Military, I was a 9/11 dispatcher for over 10 years. During Andrew the roof blew off of our Communication Center, the phones rang furiously with people screaming for help that we couldn't give.

We worked 24/7 shifts while our famlies rode out the storm at home. It's the job! We did, and thousands of other 911 Dispatchers, Police, Fire and EMS are doing even now.

Please remember them in your prayers and even though I mentioned this below, it bears repeating. If you can help please contact this agency which helps 911 Dispatchers who have been displaced by the storm. Remember some are still working and cannot return home to take care of their own:

PSTC 911 CARES
230 Twin Dolphin Drive #C
Redwood City, CA 94065

650-595-5202 is the phone number

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