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Missing friends

August 31, 2005

Judge Winsberg and Isabel made it in yesterday afternoon and were able to tune in to a television for the first time. As mentioned yesterday, they left their 3-story St. Charles Avenue home to ride out the storm in the Hilton Hotel which is at the end of Canal Street on the Mississippi River. Needless to say, they had quite a harrowing tale. Power went out but there were generators which were able to light the hallways somewhat. Still. . . no A/C. They raved about the staff, who they said were wonderful, running up and down 26 flights of stairs to make sure everyone had food, etc. They said it was like being on a boat as the building creaked and swayed practically making them seasick. Luckily, yesterday morning they were told about the levee break and that they needed to get out, which as you know, they did.

Our friends, Philip Plaisance and Ken Haydel, who own The OxBow Restaurant here in St. Francisville, treated us (and other N.O. refugees) to a fabulous dinner in their gorgeous new home, complete with fine china, linens, silver & flowers! Ken, who is originally from New Orleans, had many family members in town and like most New Orleaneans, sure knows how to make the best of a difficult time! It reminded me of Hazel Guggenheim’s father in his tuxedo asking the band to play as they loaded women & children onto the rescue boats as the Titanic sank. So terribly sad and tragic, yet so surreal.

It seems one of the biggest problems we’re having down here is finding out about friends and loved ones. I was excited to check my webstats this morning and see that quite a few people have been reading my blog the last couple of days! So. . . I’m hoping that I can use this venue to put out inquiries for some missing friends. Jerry hasn’t heard from his brother David Winsberg who lives in Waveland, MS (near Biloxi). Also, Gwen and Mike Williams were staying in their New Orleans home at #1 Egret Street near Lake Ponchartrain because of Gwen’s elderly mother, Gloria Abadie. Isabel’s brother, Mitchell Herzog who lives near Slidell, LA hasn’t been heard from. David Walker miraculously heard from his brother who was in his attic waiting to be rescued. If anyone has any information, we’d sure love to hear. Also, the news doesn’t seem to say anything about uptown New Orleans and what condition it’s in. If anyone knows anything, could you please email us? ellen@ellenkennon.com

Thanks so much and keep those prayers coming!

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