It’s been six months since Southwest Louisiana absorbed the second blow from the one-two punch landed by Hurricanes Laura and Delta, in what was a record-breaking Atlantic hurricane season, and residents of the region have been furiously rebuilding since.
It’s been a slog, as New Orleanians who endured Katrina and Baton Rougeans who went through the 2016 floods can attest.
The Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana is hoping to lift spirits with a video the foundation released this week. Simply titled “Hope,” the video captures a range of Lake Charles-area musicians, first responders and others singing and dancing, many atop roofs in various states of repair. The scene echoes the song’s refrain: “Shout it from the rooftop, we’re coming back better than before.”
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Sara Judson, president and CEO of the foundation, said the song is meant to be a “hurricane recovery theme song” for Southwest Louisiana. She said the video aims to change the conversation from “what happened to us to what we are going to make happen and how we progress with the progress. Creating opportunity from the devastation of the storms is a commitment we all share and that’s what this song is about.”
President Joe Biden mentioned the estimated $19 billion damage caused by Hurricane Laura in unveiling his plan for a national infrastructure bill. He specifically noted damage to water systems and the electrical grid caused by the storm, though his plan has yet to specify what improvements might be funded in the region.
The National Hurricane Center recently estimated damage from Hurricane Delta at nearly $3 billion. Both storms made landfall in Cameron Parish.