Following the worst storm in New Jersey's recent history, Barnegat-Manahawkin Patch brings you some first-hand accounts of people that have had their lives forever changed by Superstorm Sandy. Below, you will find some stories of people interviewed by Patch at the evacuation shelter at Southern Regional High School yesterday.
Katherine McAffrey, Surf City
'Squeezed in a [rescue] boat with a dog'
I knew I was in trouble when the tide started to come up to my front steps. I called Surf City and the fire department came. They couldn't get their truck down the street so they came in a rowboat. As they were bringing me out, my neighbor called out to the [rescue personnel] for help. So they went and got her, and four of us, and a dog ended up squeezed into the boat.
Louise Fama, Beach Haven West
'They carried me like a baby out of my house.'
I have lived here for 18 years, and haven't seen anything like this. I live on Clarence Drive, and it has never been like this. I saw the reports about evacuating but there has been other storms where it wasn't like this. About 7:30 a.m. [on Monday], I started to pack and called police. [The Stafford Police Chief] called me personally around 10:30 a.m., and by that time, the water was already up to the front stairs. They came with a boat, and I tried to walk out, and the rescue guy said, 'you can't walk out there. The water was already up to my neck.' So he picked me up and carried me like a little baby to the boat. I couldn't believe it.
Brandon Horan, Ship Bottom
'The water just poured in.'
I was one of the last ones off the island. I called 9-1-1 around 10 p.m. I didn't leave because the house has been in my family for decades. There was no water during Hurricane Irene, or during the big storm of 62. I watched as six inches of water just poured into the first floors. I did what the [rescue personnel] suggested, and went to the second story, but the deck and the house started to shake. I didn't feel safe anymore, so I made the call. I had to swim a little ways to the National Guard [rescue team boat].