A group of four responders from Indiana, including three from the Region – Lori Postma, a nurse and Emergency Preparedness and Bio-terrorism Coordinator for Franciscan Alliance in Munster; Paige Connelly, Porter County Telecommunications Dispatcher; and Mike Webber, Porter County Emergency Management Agency Assistant Director; returned to Long Beach, New York, Tuesday for a “thank you” celebration marking the one-year anniversary of Super Storm Sandy. The Indiana Department of Homeland Security says the group had lunch, watched a video detailing recovery efforts and visited places that have recovered from the storm. Diane Mack, Director of Emergency Management and Continuity, Indiana University, was also on the Indiana team.
That's Postma in the top photo, taken in the past week, in the ice arena that's back open to the public. The photo below was from last year when the Indiana team arrived in Long Beach, NY, and that arena was packed with donated goods. The Indiana team helped manage those donations as well as thousands of volunteers in the area. [Photos provided/Lori Postma, courtesy Indiana Department of Homeland Security]
During the event, a letter was read from Governor Mike Pence to the City of Long Beach. It highlighted what an honor it was for Indiana to aid neighbors on the East Coast, and expressed support for the continuing recovery process.
“You couldn’t imagine that you would make that great a difference in just two weeks, but everyone remembered us,” said Postma. “It was emotional for us because we never got to see the end result, but everyone remembered us; we were treated like long lost family returning home.”