The little girl with a beaming smile, who heartily embraced Air Force Master Sgt. Mike Maroney in the aftermath of her rescue from the ravages of Hurricane Katrina, has been on the pararescueman’s mind ten years out from the storm that submerged much of New Orleans.

Maroney said he never caught the little girl’s name who his rescue team air lifted away from the rooftops, along with six other of her family members. Within the misery and destruction he witnessed, he recalls that she touched his life during her brief embrace -- caught in a photograph -- as she and her family disembarked from the aircraft after touching down with the rescue team at the airport.

It was a moment that made everything worthwhile, Maroney said, who since left active duty and is now in the reserves.

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