What Was Good About The "Ivan Flood"

Reflecting five years later.

The floods of 2004-05, along with the Shell Chemical Explosion, the storms of 1998 and the various presidential visits to our area, was among the biggest stories I've covered in my almost 30 years (29 years this past week) at WTAP.

It's one of those stories that no one in the area at this time (especially no one who actually was affected by the storm and the floods) will ever forget.

But all of us...including those of us in the media...who were caught up in the story at the time, tend to forget what DIDN'T happen as a result of the storm and in the weeks to follow.

Lots of people were displaced by the floods, which took the area by surprise.  Many of us went to bed the night before thinking the worst of the storm had passed us by.  People who weren't displaced, such as downtown Marietta businesses, suffered financial losses into the hundreds of thousands (perhaps even millions) of dollars.  Some never reopened.

But I don't recall of one person losing their lives as a result of the storm and the floods. That's amazing when you think about it, considering all the devastation.

I thought of that almost a year later, when Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, resulting not only in billions of dollars in damages, but the loss of more than 1800 lives.

The two storms, admittedly, aren't a good comparison.  I like to say that what we faced from Ivan was a mud puddle compared to Katrina.

Compare it instead, to the previously-mentioned storms of June, 1998, which resulted in several deaths, half a dozen alone in Noble County.

Although, as I learned from some business people and residents this week, the "Ivan storm" has left some physical and emotional scars, most of the people affected by it are still around, unless they've moved out of the area.

Mostly, people have moved on.  And that's a good thing.


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