First Hit, Last To Get Fed Aid

There are still places emergency aid hasn't reached in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

"Plaquemines didn't get nothing," complains resident Jeff Edgecombe.

Like the rest of the people who've called the parish home, Edgecombe lost everything he owns to Katrina, reports CBS News correspondent Byron Pitts.

But no one in the parish 40 miles south of New Orleans, on the Gulf of Mexico, had received any help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as of Monday morning, according to Pitts.

"There's not one grown man who can say he didn't cry over this one," Edgecombe observes.

Area towns were once fishing communities, with catches ranging from crawfish to oysters. But Katrina will mean many lost livelihoods in the parish.

"I got here me a souvenir, that keeps me from crying. I can hold on to it," says Jay Friedman as he clutched a brick that's in the debris that was his house.

"Catastrophic," Friedman emphasizes. "Take that word and think about what it means. And this is what it means. …Can't get no worse."

And it won't get any better, Friedman says, unless the federal government shows up soon: "We're all in the boat together. We gotta to get together to pull together."

Plaquemines Parish was the first place in Louisiana hit by Katrina, and is among the last to receive federal aid.

It took the area about 20 years to recover from Hurricane Camille in August 1969.

The death toll there from Katrina is expected to reach into the hundreds.
  • Brian Dakss

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