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Power restored to parts of Killian, residents still rallying to support others after Ida

Power restored to parts of Killian, residents still rallying to support others after Ida
Power restored to parts of Killian, residents still rallying to support others after Ida(KY3)
Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 7:27 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - In welcome news to several residents in the small town of Killian, lights slowly returned Thursday, Sept. 9.

Nearly two weeks after Ida tore through Livingston Parish though, many are still in the dark, some without a roof.

“The ceiling rafters and joist pinned me in the chair, we all thought my wife was dead, we didn’t realize she had gotten up and walked out, my daughter in law and grandkid were safe, not a mark on them,” Byron Melvin said.

The storm sent the large oak tree in Melvin’s front yard into his living room, crushing the house.

“All my rafters, my support beams, they’re all gone,” he said. “They’re cracked, being held up in the next room by bee boxes of all things.”

While he waits for an insurance inspector to examine the damage and figure out what to do with the house, he is also waiting on assistance from FEMA, none of which has arrived. Now, he has to live under the blue roof.

“The hardest part for me is watching my wife go through it,” he said. “She’s making it pretty rough. I mean, this is all we got. I’m retired, she’s retired, this is what you retire for and you lose it.”

FEMA was stationed in Killian helping residents file for federal assistance. The organization packed up Thursday afternoon and is moving elsewhere. A FEMA representative said anyone who had not filed in person would likely have to file online or over the phone.

The Killian First Baptist Church is continuing to give out hot meals. Pastor Dallas Stewart said the church gives out nearly a thousand food boxes every day, plus water, cleaning supplies, and whatever else someone might need.

“Whatever we can do, that’s what it’s all about because we’re all in this together, we’re all hurting,” Stewart said. “That’s the one thing about god’s people, we can all come together.”

It has helped people like Melvin find stability during his greatest time of need.

“We wouldn’t make it without them,” Melvin said.

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