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Crisfield Marks Anniversary Of Superstorm Sandy As Rebuilding Continues

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CRISFIELD, Md. (WJZ) — People all over the Northeast are marking the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. The devastating storm killed at least 147 people and damaged or destroyed around 650,000 homes.

Kai Jackson has more.

When Sandy hit Crisfield, the bay worked its way into Ruth Fountain’s bedroom.

“Oh, there was water. [It went] into the bedroom, into the dresser. You couldn’t imagine what it was like,” Fountain said.

The storm surge turned the town’s dock to kindling and ruined foundations, heating and electrical systems.

“They’ve been through a lot because there were people who lost everything. There are people who have damage to their homes that is going to take a long time to repair,” said Rev. Betty Smith, Long Term Recovery Support.

Photo Gallery: Remembering Superstorm Sandy One Year Later

Things were fixed a nail at a time, one job after the next from infrastructure like a new, sturdier town dock to new homes going up–many being built by church groups.

“What they need is some skill and a willing heart,” said Dick Fengolio, volunteer.

Long-term recovery and support in Crisfield is being driven by a coalition of faiths, aiding a town often overlooked.

“The volunteers are the effort. We’re about to build a new home for about $50,000,” said Phillip Huber, Long Term Recovery Support. “It was all about New York and New Jersey, and never a mention about this happening in Crisfield.”

Photo Gallery: Sandy Relief In Pictures

“It’s been a struggle but I thank God we’re as far as we are today,” Fountain said.

The recovery group is building 35 new homes and helping to repair far more.

The Red Cross also remains active in Crisfield.

New York and New Jersey were perhaps the most affected, however.

A bonfire Tuesday marked a celebration of survival for those who endured Superstorm Sandy last year. The anniversary of the hurricane is both poignant and painful.

Even a year after the storm ravaged areas of New Jersey and New York, rebuilding continues.

Homes in Breezy Point, N.Y., were wiped out by flooding and fire. On the anniversary, volunteers planted seagrass as a buffer against future storms.

“Right now, every conversation we have leads to Hurricane Sandy. I look forward to the day when we move beyond that,” said Marty Ingram, Breezy Point resident.

Stories of hope continue to emerge from the destruction.

In Far Rockaway, N.Y.,  the home of Rosa Vasquez has been beautifully rebuilt with numerous donated items.

“It’s overwhelming to know you have no place to go to and to finally have your own home and be able to come home, it’s an indescribable feeling,” she said.

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