--Angela Hill, WWL-TV anchor, New Orleans
"Mike Schaefer listens. And because he listens so well, we get to hear the real stories of Katrina and St. Bernard Parish. I've seen the aftermath there with my own eyes and thought what must it have been like when the storm hit, when the floods came? Now we know. And what a story."
--Harry Smith, CBS News
"When friends ask me what Katrina was really like, this is the book I'll recommend to them. The individual stories Mike tells, of survival and loss, desperation and heroism, perfectly capture the unreal chaos that was Katrina. Even if, like I did, you think you know all about the storm and its aftermath, you'll find something new, and, no doubt, inspiring, in this book."
--Tracy Smith, CBS News correspondent
This book offers insightful, emotional accounts of life before, during, and immediately after Hurricane Katrina in a parish that seemingly disappeared from the government's sight. While President Bush was shaking hands with FEMA director Michael Browne ("Brownie," as he will long be remembered) on the fourth day after the storm, St. Bernard Parish was struggling to salvage what they could.
As the rest of the world watched the worst of humanity emerge on television, ordinary people did extraordinary things to save the parish that found itself almost completely submerged in floodwater. Heart-wrenching stories of the human will to survive offer an inside perspective on what it means to be a survivor of Hurricane Katrina.
Mikel Schaefer moved to St. Bernard Parish when he was ten years old and spent his formative years there with the values, culture, and passion for life found in St. Bernard. The inspiration to write Lost in Katrina came from a desire to share with the public the loss and destruction that devastated the little-known parish. When Schaefer began the collection of interviews and personal accounts for his book, he realized that the men and women of St. Bernard were not just victims but heroes in the wake of the storm. After graduating from Chalmette High School in St. Bernard Parish, Schaefer studied journalism at the University of New Orleans where he graduated with a bachelor of arts in communications. After graduating, Schaefer worked as a sports producer and an assignment editor at WWL-TV, the CBS affiliate in the Greater New Orleans Area. In the aftermath of the storm, Schaefer was awarded the Peabody award and the Columbia Dupont and National Edward R. Murrow awards for his efforts in covering Hurricane Katrina. Having worked as a journalist in the New Orleans area for over twenty years, Schaefer is deeply passionate about his region and preserving the culture Katrina nearly destroyed. Schaefer lives in Metairie, Louisiana, and works as an executive producer of WWL-TV.
On the afternoon of August 20, 1910, a battering ram of wind moved through the drought-stricken national forests of Washington, Idaho, and Montana, whipping the hundreds of small blazes burning across the forest floor into a roaring inferno that jumped from treetop to ridge as it raged, destroying towns and timber in the blink of an eye. Forest rangers had assembled nearly ten thousand men to fight the fires, but no living person had seen anything like those flames, and neither the rangers nor anyone else knew how to subdue them. Egan recreates the struggles of the overmatched rangers against the implacable fire with unstoppable dramatic force, and the larger story of outsized president Teddy Roosevelt and his chief forester, Gifford Pinchot, that follows is equally resonant. Pioneering the notion of conservation, Roosevelt and Pinchot did nothing less than create the idea of public land as our national treasure, owned by every citizen. Even as TR's national forests were smoldering they were saved: The heroism shown by his rangers turned public opinion permanently in favor of the forests, though it changed the mission of the forest service in ways we can still witness today.
This e-book includes a sample chapter of SHORT NIGHTS OF THE SHADOW CATCHER.