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Longboat Key Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2009 12 years ago

Man on the street: Hurricane Charley

by: Maggie Pahos

Question: Do you remember where you were when Hurricane Charley hit in 2004?

Jim Purcell

“I headed to my brother’s house in Fort Lauderdale, but when I got there, my key didn’t work. I tried to find a motel and got a ticket for doing an illegal U-turn in the process —they later sent my check back after I explained my situation that night. I couldn’t find a motel, so I ended up sleeping in a rest stop on Alligator Alley.”

Bonnie Zeeman
“We went to our cousin’s house in University Park. We knew it would be foolish to stay here. In 18 years, this was the third time that we had evacuated and nothing happened.”

The Rev. Philip Scheff
“I was in San Antonio Catholic Church, in Port Charlotte. It was pretty terrifying. It sounded like a freight train. Everything was fine before the storm, but, afterward, it looked like a war zone.”

Carsten Rueffer
“We were in Winterhaven because it was supposed to come to Sarasota. We ended up right in it. I’ve never seen so much power — huge trees were slamming.”

Scott Makela

“We live on Anna Maria Island and evacuated to a friend’s house in Bradenton. About 1 or 1:30 we saw that it had started to head east — we started to party at that moment. We feared for the people that it was heading toward, but we were also grateful that it was missing us.”  

Milan Adrian

“We evacuated to a school off of Fruitville, which didn’t have hurricane-proof windows. Our house did. When we came back to the Key at night, the police wouldn’t let us back to our house, so we spent the night at the Hyatt.”


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