What a difference 2 weeks and a Category 5 hurricane makes!

My Wife Karin's family have lived in the Florida Keys since 1999, and we've been visiting there ever since. We got engaged in Key West and married in Key West a year later, at sunset, at the world famous Mallory Square.

Key West means a lot to our family. Seeing The Keys torn apart by Hurricane Irma has been personal to us, as anyone who has history there.

We took this picture at the famous Southernmost Point landmark in Key West, 2 weeks before Hurricane Irma hit. You can see the results of the wind and storm surge.

 

The Mike Show! and DrieGleiche-Reddit

 

Wife Karin's family live on Sugarloaf Key at MM 17. The chose not to evacuate.

Hurricane Irma made landfall Sunday morning, September 10, and that was the last time we heard from Karin's family for some time...[see more here]

A few days later we received a mysterious phone call from a stranger, who said she had a message for Karin...[see more here]

Then on Friday, September 15, Karin got a call from her mom. They had gotten cell phone service back to parts of Key West, the the news wasn't great...[see more here]

On Saturday, September 16, more cell phone service was back to other parts of The Keys. Power was returning to certain Keys and residents were starting to be allowed back in, as the US 1 was reopened for traffic. Good thing, because Karin's parent's generator stopped working that morning.

As I write this - 9 days after the hurricane hit - Karin's parents got running water in their damaged home. A water boil is still in effect. They still are without basic services and food and water is scarce. They haven't been able to go back to work. Rebuilding will take some time as you can see from this video posted on YouTube by CBS This Morning...

 

 

I was given a good piece of advice, while anxiously waiting to hear from Karin's parents. If you are ever in an extreme situation where you won't have cell service or your phone battery is dying, this simple thing can help your friends and family trying to contact you...

 

 

Thank you to everyone who has asked about and expressed concern for our family over the last stressful 2 weeks. All of our family sincerely appreciate your thoughts and prayers. - MIKE