In case you didn’t know, today (August 29) is the sixth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Six years ago today, I was huddled in a flooding hotel with my family, watching Katrina destroy much of the area around me. Tomorrow I would have gone outside for the first time since the storm, only to discover that a tree in my yard had destroyed my neighbor’s house, much of my street was in ruins and that, luckily, my own home had suffered little damage. Hours later, the levees would break in New Orleans and a relative of mine would die five days later alone in her home in St. Bernard Parish.

So much of what happened this week six years ago shaped who I am and who I strive to be.  The people of the Gulf Coast are in my thoughts, as always, and I hope they have a better year this year than they have had in the recent past.