Letter of Thanks from Long Beach ResidentMore on Student Response to Superstorm Sandy
I am writing to you this morning to try and express the gratitude I have for the student body of Hofstra University, in particular, the young women of the Hofstra Equestrian Team.
My Mom, Barbara Byrne has called 87 Connecticut Avenue her home for over 48 years. After my father passed away twenty years ago, my Mom kept up with all the maintenance of her home and was quite content staying and retiring in the Long Beach community.
During the days leading up to Hurricane Sandy hitting land, my twelve year old son and I filled fifty bags of sand and sealed the wooden shield in front of my Mom’s garage with silicone. My daughter who lived in the finished basement carried all the belongings she could to higher ground.
During the night of Sandy, we watched the water rise over five feet in the basement and became trapped in the home not knowing when the water levels would stop. The next morning, after the National Guard came and stated we needed to leave our home, the producer of Good Morning America drove us to City Hall where we took a bus to the shelter at Nassau Community College.
My sister and her family who live in Sayville graciously took us in until we found a house to rent on a monthly basis in Sayville, NY. I registered my children into the Sayville schools, contacted my Mom’s insurance agencies, FEMA and got the news that my car was totaled.
A dear family friend had offered to try and get volunteers do a clean-out of my Mom’s basement. While I was in class at Hofstra, my mom went to 87 Connecticut Avenue and was greeted by several young women who had selflessly volunteered to clean out my Mom’s basement and all my daughters ruined furniture, clothes and possessions. When I spoke to my Mom later that day, she was understandably drained and overwhelmed.
My mom was also very grateful to have had such wonderful young women help us in our time of need. She said that one of the volunteers gently encouraged her to go over to her friend’s house and not stand and watch as all the “stuff” was thrown onto the street. Mom later told me that the volunteers were from the Hofstra Equestrian Team. I was speechless, Dean Libman. Hofstra Equestrian Team stepped up and volunteered to clean out my Mom’s basement and carry out my daughter’s things without even knowing that they were doing it for one of their fellow students.
My family and I will be forever grateful to the women of the Hofstra Equestrian Team and to Hofstra University who has time again been there for us through the storm.