11 May 2006

Just Pathetic . . .

Hum "Proud to be an American (at least I know I'm free)" as you read this . . .

from WWL TV:
71-year-old man becomes a hero during Betsy, now forced to sleep in a tent post-Katrina

08:08 PM CDT on Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Bill Capo / WWL-TV Action Reporter

After Hurricane Betsy, a New Orleans man became a hero when he rescued others from the flooded areas of the city.

Ed Wragge has been forced to sleep inside a tent that he pitched inside his gutted house. He's been waiting weeks for the keys to his FEMA trailer.

Then after Hurricane Katrina, the same man asked FEMA for a trailer to live in until his flood damaged home could be rebuilt. On Wednesday, Eyewitness News found him living in a tent.

Ed Wragge, 71, has been sleeping on a cot inside a tent that has been pitched in a room of his gutted Gentilly home.

“It’s been real frustrating, I give up. The government should do well for people. I don’t know what to do,” cried Wragge.

Wragge doesn’t have a kitchen, so he eats meals from cans and drinks bottled water. He does not have a bathroom, yet outside his home sits the FEMA trailer he had asked for in October.

He said it has been there seven weeks, and he has yet to receive the keys. Wragge had been staying with friends, but couldn’t any longer.

“I got to sleep in this house. I have no place else to stay, everybody died. They died on me,” Wragge said as he tried to hold back his tears.

Before he bought the tent, Wragge was sleeping in his car, which he said was even worse.

“Oh, it’s miserable. I’m too tall, I couldn’t stretch out my legs,” he said.

Wragge said there was still mold in the house he and his nephew were gutting. He has lived there since 1960, and his parents before him. Wragge said Katrina was the first time it had flooded.

Among his belongings he was trying to save were the water damaged uniforms that he wore when he was a Sergeant in the 1960s. He said he wore those uniforms during Hurricane Betsy when he was on duty.

“I was a National Guard Sergeant. The first few days I was in the water, until I got too cold, I started driving a truck,” he said.

Wragge said he wore the uniforms when he rescued hundreds of people.

The reason Wragge hadn’t been given the keys was because there was no power to the trailer.

Since he called the Action Line, Eyewitness News has had several conversations with FEMA and the contractor Fluor. Officials at FEMA said they were working on the situation and Wednesday morning, FEMA called Wragge.

“Oh, it would be a life saver, been sleeping in a tent. I’m making do,” Wragge said.

Eight fucking months and this guy--a hero following Hurricane Betsy no less--has to "make do" living in his car and in camping in a tent within his moldy house???? What the fuck is wrong with this country? This shit makes me livid. And you know what the worse part is? This isn't an isolated situation . . . .

I am so sorry this bores you, America.

TAGS: Katrina, New Orleans, NOLA, FEMA


At May 11, 2006 6:08 PM, Blogger I. D. Reilly said...

What is wrong with this country? You mean the same country that allows NSA to create a database of your telephone calls? A country that is run by a Congress comprised of liars, cheats and hypocrites? A country that elects a President that cannot even speak in complete sentences? A country full of immigrants that hate immigrants? A country of unbelievable wealth that cannot provide its working poor with adequate health care coverage? A country that uses its military might simply to justify its very existence and the contractors it supports? A country that has been sold to heartless, gutless corporate entities that have worked to create a society dependent on them for their very survival?

I am surprised you are surprised.

At May 12, 2006 8:28 AM, Blogger Roux said...

I have to comment although it'll probably make all of you mad.

Where is his family? Where are his neighbors? Where are his friends? Where is his church?

You cannot depend on the government for help.

At May 12, 2006 2:39 PM, Blogger John Blutarsky said...


His family is dead if you read the article. And one of the few that are still alive is helping him gut the house. His neighbors and friends are probably fighting to get the same things that he's fighting for. Maybe he's not religious, ever think of that?

No, you cannot depend on the governemnt for help but the point is that we ought to be able to depend on the governemnt. That's why this whole situation is pathetic.

At May 13, 2006 3:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"the point is that we ought to be able to depend on the governemnt."

Says you...

At May 13, 2006 10:48 AM, Blogger Seymour D. Fair said...


The reality is that this trailer siutation is nothing but a boondoggle for the politically-connected firms that have secured these contracts. So long as they (and the 30 levels of subs) get paid the 150K or whatever ridiculous amount of money it all adds up to per trailers by the time its all over is all that matters. Whether or not the persons in need of the trailer due to MANMADE, federally-induced flooding, actually get to benefit from its delivery is a secondary concern.

At May 15, 2006 2:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem with this country is believing a so-called President who lies, sends our people to a place where they aren't wanted and can't win, and only cares about the almighty dollar he can make! Send his own daughters to Iraq!

At January 21, 2009 1:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...







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