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TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: My name is Trudi Ann Lawrence. Today is September 4th and can you state your name?

PAUL SMITH: Paul Smith.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: Your age, if you don't mind sharing.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: No way [laughter], fifty-nine.

PAUL SMITH: Can you state your ethnicity for the record?

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: White male.

PAUL SMITH: Okay.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: How long have you lived in this home?

PAUL SMITH: Well, my wife bought this house in 1976.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. And if you don't mind sharing the cost of the house when it was first purchased.

PAUL SMITH: At that time, 35,000.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: All right. And how many rooms are in the home?

PAUL SMITH: Three bedrooms, one and a half bath.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Is there any specific reason why this house?

PAUL SMITH: Yes. She fell in love with it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: And…

PAUL SMITH: She was actually going to build a new one, but she fell in love with this one.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Where did you guys live prior?

PAUL SMITH: In town.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: In Union Beach still? Okay. What do you like most about the neighborhood?

PAUL SMITH: It's just a nice place to grow up and raise a family.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Okay. So can you tell me about your family? Who makes up your family?

PAUL SMITH: Well, you know, wife, and she has two daughters, and a granddaughter.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. And can you state your occupation and how long you've been doing it?

PAUL SMITH: I work for International Flavors & Fragrances. I do the sample shipping.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. If you don't mind sharing, your salary, income or your bracket?

PAUL SMITH: It's like 80,000 a year.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So, what attracts you to the area? What are you…

PAUL SMITH: I grew up here, so. My family moved here right before my third birthday, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: This is where I've grown up.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Can you tell me a little bit more about the neighborhood, the community?

PAUL SMITH: Well, it's a bedroom community, close-knit. When the going gets tough, the people tougher.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They stick together and we work together, and it's just a great place to grow up.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Can you tell me about the schools, economics, any reputations?

PAUL SMITH: Well, we only have pre-K to 8th.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Uh-huh.

PAUL SMITH: We're center district high school, so our school is Great Memorial School. They've had full-time kindergarten for probably five years, but some towns still don't have it, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But they've had it for at least five years.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. All right. So when you first heard the storm was coming, what were your expectations?

PAUL SMITH: We've always been lucky in the past, so. The worst storm we've had that I can remember prior to Sandy was the Nor'easter, December 11, 1992.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And that was mostly rain.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And the water came halfway up our side yard. And Hurricane Irene last year or two years ago was three blocks away.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: So I guess I wasn't paying attention because I was not expecting anything worse than '92 or worse than Irene.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because usually by the time the storms get to us, they peter out a little bit and we don't get the brunt. But this time, we got hammered.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So, what were the preparations that you made?

PAUL SMITH: Well, that we leave in the hands of our emergency management and our first responders, who are phenomenal.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I actually spent part of the day with them, and they make sure people get out.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They let them know. You can't force people out, legally.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: They advise them to leave, and thank God people listened, because that's been my biggest fear.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I've been telling my wife for the past ten years, "One of these days we're going to get a storm and we're going to lose a lot of people because people aren't afraid anymore."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because like I said, usually by the time storms hit us, they don't hit us as bad as they do North Carolina and Florida and all the other states south of us. And I said, "We're going to get hit with a bad one, one day, and we're going to lose people because people are not afraid."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But they listened. Thank God, because we didn't lose a soul.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And that's through the good work of our first responders.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So, take me through the first day of the storm. What was going on throughout the town? What were the weather conditions like?

PAUL SMITH: Well, yeah, it was windy and it wasn't really raining. Thank God we didn't get that much rain.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: If we've gotten the rain they predicted, it would've been a whole lot worse than it was.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: This is mostly wind, which, tell that to the insurance companies, by the way. This was mostly wind and water. If you talk to your insurance companies, they call it flood. The homeowners is wind.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But if it wasn't for the wind, you wouldn't have the water you had.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: The wind pushed it in. And in the afternoon, we had the waves breaking over our beachfront bulkhead at two o'clock in the afternoon. They were breaking over. And we've never seen nothing like this. I was in OEM and actually called somebody whose house is on the Bayfront, and they said to me, "Yesterday you ask me to come to take your car to safety, today we're coming to get you." And the people said, "We're not leaving." And the guy was, "Listen, we're coming to get you."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: So they went there and the people went with them. Thank God, because their house was gone.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: All right.

PAUL SMITH: So, thank God they listened.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. When did power go out?

PAUL SMITH: We lost power probably four or five o'clock in the afternoon.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: But we knew it was coming.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Was it a choice to cut the power, or…?

PAUL SMITH: Jersey Central cut it because their station was going to be flooded

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And they advised us prior to that they had to cut the power. And I'd have no problems with Jersey Central power line. They worked with us, and no problems at all.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Did you stay home?

PAUL SMITH: Yes, we did.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: The whole time?

PAUL SMITH: Because we've never been flooded before, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Okay. So, when you woke up the next day, did you go to sleep the night of the storm?

PAUL SMITH: Yeah, because I had no choice. We had three feet of water in here, and we go up two steps we only had ten inches up there. But it didn't last long.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: It was like forty minutes and the water left. It came in and went out, but it left its mark.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: That night?

PAUL SMITH: Yes.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So you watched the water actually come in?

PAUL SMITH: Yes, and it was scary.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But we went upstairs. We sat in the kitchen with our legs up and holding the cats, and like I said, it was only 40 minutes, but it seemed like eternity.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: But yeah, and it's left its mark and I said, "Well, might as well go to bed now. What else can we do?" We had no power. We had nothing.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Couldn't even walk around because furniture was out in the other room, the refrigerator was against the door, the water toppled things over.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yeah. So it came in really, really strong?

PAUL SMITH: It did.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. When you woke up the next day, what was going through your head?

PAUL SMITH: Well, my first thoughts were just to get up, shower, and go check out the town, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Which is what I did

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: On foot.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Tell me more about that.

PAUL SMITH: Wow. Once I hit the Bayfront, you know, after the tears I said, "Whoa, we got a lot of work to do."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: It was just -- it looked like it was hit by bombs. I've never seen anything like that in my life. I've seen it on TV.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm

PAUL SMITH: Florida and the bad storms, Katrina, the storms they've had there. But never saw it with my own two eyes.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So, can you describe a lot of the damage that you experienced in your own home and that you view?

PAUL SMITH: Well, in our own home was just water damage, so it really wasn't -- we had no structural damage. It was just water. So we had to rip out walls and floors and replace all the furniture because it was wrecked. But we were lucky.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I actually told my wife after I walked to the beachfront and walked around town and I came back and I told her we were blessed, and she said, "How?" I said, "We have a home to clean, because a lot of people don't." It was sad.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So can you describe the mood of the community?

PAUL SMITH: Well, first the shock, but I think the majority just want to get together and do it again and let's fix it up and make it nicer and prettier and better.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I think the majority -- the problem is insurance companies. The problem is some people didn't have enough insurance and they're in trouble. Hopefully they get help.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: Some people are underinsured because some people didn't have flood insurance because they didn't have a mortgage, and they're up the creek without a paddle, and…

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So who did you contact the first day? Were you able to contact anyone?

PAUL SMITH: Well, my phone was still working.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. What cellphone company did you have?

PAUL SMITH: I have Verizon.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: So yeah, I talked to the lieutenant governor and I talked to our sheriff and our freeholders and our senators and our congressmen, and they were all here to help us, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay

PAUL SMITH: And we're talking different parties here, so. It was mostly Republican but our congressman isn't.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And he was wonderful to us, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Congressman Frank Pallone and our sheriffs. He sent down officers. They worked with our police department through the county prosecutor's office. They took over the town because it was bad.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They set up stations around town, only letting certain people in if you lived here.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: Because they were worried about looters, and…

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Okay. So, how long was power out?

PAUL SMITH: I believe it was thirteen, fourteen days.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And actually, before we turned it back on, we did it slowly.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We had actually people go around town, engineer and construction official, making sure they can turn the power on in people's homes, so we didn't have fires.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yes. How long before normal trash pickup resumed, or…?

PAUL SMITH: You know, that wasn't long, right? Yeah.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: And was about the gas? How long before…?

PAUL SMITH: Well, the gas stations, yeah, that was crazy.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: That's something the state needs to work on, or that's probably part of the -- Sandy taskforce will take care of that that the president Started, which I happen to be a member of.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Hmm. Okay. So, how did cleanup begin? What was [unintelligible - 00: 10: 44]?

PAUL SMITH: Well, right away we started cleaning up. Our professionals got together. We had a special meeting to authorize the spending, and we started cleaning up as soon as possible.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Now, what was the protocol of cleanup?

PAUL SMITH: Well, just to get the debris out of the streets so we can drive and walk.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: The first step was the right of ways.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: So people could walk and people could drive, because there were roads you couldn't drive down.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: There were homes in the streets. I mean, it was pretty sad.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Who did you look to for support? Did you contact any insurance companies, FEMA?

PAUL SMITH: Well, FEMA actually called us, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: They set up in our borough hall the day after election, which was a week after the storm.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because the election was the Tuesday or so after and all the voting was done at borough hall because some of our districts weren't usable. Some of the other firehouses were flooded.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We have five districts, all of whom were in borough hall, in the courtroom. When FEMA came here and they said, "We'd like to set up here to help you and the beach and the surrounding area," I told them, you know, with the permission of the council, "The day after election, the room is yours."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And they were there until the end of May.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. I know you said that there protocols with letting people in. Can you tell me more about that?

PAUL SMITH: Yeah. Yeah. Actually, one station was a block away, because all here was flooded.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Anything towards the bay from here was all flooded. So they had service officers sitting a block away. And if you didn't live in this area, you weren't getting through.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: They had them down that way. And they were all over town.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: There were curfews?

PAUL SMITH: Yes, 10: 00 p.m.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: 10: 00 p.m. Okay.

PAUL SMITH: Actually, I don't know if the curfew's ever been lifted.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter]

PAUL SMITH: It might still be in place

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter]

PAUL SMITH: And we had state troopers also -- the state, the governor's office sent troopers in. They were here until the end of June.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Okay. How did you notice, between yourself and the community members, how did you notice coping?

PAUL SMITH: Well, most people were positive. You had negative people and you're always going to have that, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: You try to let them not bother you. But the majority of people want to fix their homes and move back in. We have no clue how many people walked away, and we're not going to know for a while.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because there are people rebuilding and there are people still waiting on money. But I just actually saw couples tonight because I got my pizza, and one couple said, "We hope to be in by December." And the other couple said they're waiting on the insurance but they hope to be in by December also, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. All right. So, did you feel safe in your community at the time, knowing that everything was going on?

PAUL SMITH: With our first responders, absolutely.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I got an email a week after the storm from some lady on Brook Avenue, which Brook Avenue was one of the hardest hits, maybe I'm guessing twenty-two homes.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: There was only one remaining after the storm.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: She may have been a renter, but she lived there with her boyfriend. She sent me an email telling me that she lost eight pets. She got rescued from the rooftop by our first responders. She almost lost her boyfriend to hypothermia.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And she's two lights away, and, "I can't wait to come home, and thank you very much." I was in tears.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I'm reading this. I was, "Hey, this lady lost everything she had, and she's thanking us." It wasn't me she was thanking, it was the borough, the first responders, I mean. It's unbelievable.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay, all right. Can you tell me about the aid that you noticed coming in the community?

PAUL SMITH: We're getting a lot of help through the state, and the federal government is… within a month, the governor's treasury department, they met with us to tell us what we have to do so we don't go under with our budget because they know we were devastated. And we got help from the federal government. So we've been blessed.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We're going to pull through. It's going to take a long time.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: How was the religious community?

PAUL SMITH: Unbelievable.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Every sector of life from out of the country. We had the Tzu Chi from Taiwan. They were here within the first month. They gave 700 families who were flooded in their home $600 Visa cards plus a gift bag.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And in the gift bag, it had a blanket that was made out of recycled bottles.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And then it had a little emergency pack, which was like a toothbrush and toothpaste and soap and a washcloth. And it had a bank in there, a piggybank.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And they ask you to fill the bank and at the end of the year send it to the charity of your choice.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They didn't ask you to send it to them.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yeah.

PAUL SMITH: They ask you to send it to the charity of your choice. I was so overwhelmed by that.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They could've said, "Send it to us."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: This was a group that was started in Taiwan I believe in 1966 with -- I might have the number wrong, but it was thirty women who would save a couple pennies from their grocery shopping every day. And that's how they started.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And it became worldwide. They gave our town $420,000.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And they gave to Keansburg, and they gave to South Toms River. I know they have an office up in Cedar Grove, I believe, but… unbelievable, unbelievable. Then we had Cantor Fitzgerald, who lost so many people on 9/11.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And they came down and they toured our school, they toured our borough. They're more into the schools.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because the CEO, who lost his brother on 9/11 -- he wasn't a CEO then but maybe his brother was, I'm not sure about that.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I'm trying to think of his name, escapes me now but it starts with an L. But the day of 9/11, he told me he took his child to school and he was late getting to work.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: If he didn't take his child to school, he wouldn't be here today.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And he said he took his child to school every day after that. So, they gave all the members of our school who were affected by the storm $1,000 gift card and they also gave to Keansburg. And I don't know who else they gave to, but I mean -- and then we've had -- you're talking churches. We've had Gateway Church, which is in I believe Morganville or Holmdel.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: They've been here since the day after the storm. They've been here six days a week. In the beginning it was seven, helping people.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Beautiful. We had the Jewish Federation.  I wish I can remember -- what's the name of the other church? They come down and they helped clean up. They had a bunch of young kids, like thirty of them.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: It was a Saturday. I had to work. So I said, "I'll meet you there at a certain time to see you." I don't know why I can't remember the name of the church, but they're up in North Jersey somewhere. I said [unintelligible - 00: 18: 44] church there. The World Mission Society Church of God.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And I'm not sure what town there, but North Jersey.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I came down, I thanked everyone, I shook every one of the kids' hands. I thanked them for helping us out. And then I'm walking away and they all started shouting, "We love you, we love you." They made you feel so good. It's unbelievable. And we've had churches, we've had volunteers, the RAINE Foundation. We've had Gigi, who lost her own business in town, who was there every day running the food pantry.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Our first responders lost homes, and they're still out there helping.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They weren't thinking about their home. They're thinking about what can we do to make this better?

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: It's just unbelievable. It makes you feel great.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: The first aid chief always tells me -- and it would be prior to the storm. He says, "Mayor, we're doing this to make you look good." Well, I've never looked better.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter]

PAUL SMITH: Because they're beautiful. They were beautiful, so. I walk down the street and people say, "Oh you're doing a great job," and I just looked at them and said, "Listen, thank you very much, but I'm just a small part of a great team."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Uh-huh.

PAUL SMITH: Without them, okay, we couldn't do it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And half of them don't live here, the ones that have been helping us, more than half. It's just been phenomenal. So out of something bad comes something good.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And we're going to survive and get better.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. Can you describe the losses of the town that you've noticed?

PAUL SMITH: Well, there's many there. The day of the storm, we lost fifty-two homes. Since then, we've taken down over 200.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And they're working on it. There are probably eighty-seven more to go.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm

PAUL SMITH: And that's out of 2,300. So, out of 2,300 homes we've lost over 300 that had to be gone.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yeah.

PAUL SMITH: And that's not counting the ones that were damaged. And there's a lot of people rebuilding.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And like I said earlier there, are a lot of people who walked away, but we don't know how many yet.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: That's something that's going to be awhile to figure out.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: What do you think about businesses and revenues?

PAUL SMITH: Well, see, we don't have that many businesses.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We're more bedroom and we have a few, but there's a couple that are probably not coming back. Well, the one restaurant on the beach wants to rebuild. She's down the road now. The other restaurant just three blocks away just opened two weeks ago.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: It took him two days short of ten months. The other restaurant on the restaurant on the highway, he was open within a week. He got lucky. We don't have that many bars anymore. It's pretty quiet. We have IFF over there and we have Jersey Central over here and a couple stores, couple taverns, couple restaurants, barbershops.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Uh-huh.

PAUL SMITH: On the highway there's some business, but they weren't really affected.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: The bank was closed for -- I don't know. Are they open yet? [Unintelligible - 00: 22: 01]. I'm not sure if they're open yet.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Bank of America?

PAUL SMITH: Yeah. They got flooded out, which is crazy.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: All the way up there.

PAUL SMITH: Yeah.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter]

PAUL SMITH: Well, they were actually [unintelligible - 00: 22: 14] the highway.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Crazy.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yeah.

PAUL SMITH: But now those people live down the street, the swamp is their backyard and they didn't get water in their home.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But the bank's problem, there's a line from the [unintelligible - 00: 22: 29].

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because the state has cleaned that out since the storm. But that line I guess was no good, and that's where all the water came from.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Oh, okay, okay.

PAUL SMITH: Because you don't expect them to get flooded.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Oh yeah.

PAUL SMITH: On the corner of the highway, they're nowhere near the water, but they did.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So how do you feel about the response? I know you said the local government, the federal government have been pretty good to you. Any other response that you got that [unintelligible - 00: 23: 06] either way, negative or positive?

PAUL SMITH: Like I said, county, state, and federal government have all been good to us.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I've got nothing negative about any one of them. They've all been there. The Secretary of Homeland Security was here.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Janet.

PAUL SMITH: Janet Napolitano, which she since retired. But the Secretary of HUD, Shaun Donovan, has been here. We've had -- President Carter is coming next month with Habitat for Humanity.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We've been blessed. The governor's been here. The lieutenant governor's been here a whole lot. She lives in Monmouth County, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: She was our sheriff prior to being lieutenant governor.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: So we know her personally. We had a bunch of -- I wish I can remember the name of them, but we had people at the firehouse down the street a week after the storm that were living in tents cooking sixteen [unintelligible - 00: 24: 03] meals a day for people.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Uh-huh.

PAUL SMITH: And I wish I can remember their names, but I'm sorry I can't. But I went there to thank them.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And I was on foot because at the church and I was here and there thanking people. And I got dropped off there, and I don't live far from there, so. I said, "Drop me off here. I'll thank these people then I'll walk home." So I thanked all them for everything they did, and I'm walking home and I got a call from the lieutenant governor, and she says, "I'm coming to Union Beach. Where can I meet you?" I said, "Well, I'm on my way home. You want to come to the house, you're more than welcome."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Uh-huh.

PAUL SMITH: Which were fixing up at the time. So it wasn't long after the storm, but -- and she did, she came to the house and saw the mess we had. So I know she's been here. I can't tell you how many times, because I don't know. And the county has been tremendous. Congressman Pallone has been tremendous. I call his phone and his message on there says -- he doesn't check his phone out regularly it might be awhile before he gets back to you, and I get a call in fifteen minutes, or less. And he's just been great.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We have no complaints. Senator Menendez helped us. We've had help from everybody.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: So it's been great.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Do you believe that New Jersey did everything that they could to prepare for the storm adequately?

PAUL SMITH: Yes. It was just catastrophic.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Uh-huh.

PAUL SMITH: I mean the governor was awesome and he's got good people under him, so his people that he's got working for him and helping them, they did what they had to do.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Get out. Get help. And I think more people will get out next time they hear something like this is coming.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: Seek higher ground.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Do you think that the media portrayed what was going on adequately or it was sensationalized?

PAUL SMITH: Well, the media I'm never happy with, so -- because they like to be negative.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They don't look at the positive part of things.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm, right.

PAUL SMITH: There's a lot of negative here because it was a bad thing.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But you got to look at the good things that come out of it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They tend to shy away from that.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. So how do you feel about the president and the governor coming down here and making their appearance in the area?

PAUL SMITH: I think that was the best thing that could happen in the world. And I know it was a week before election, a lot of Republicans weren't happy with the governor hanging around with the president. But he did what he had to do for his people, and I don't regret it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And I think he did the right thing.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And he put politics aside and put his people first. And you know what? God bless him.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because that was he should've done. If he's playing politics at that point, then he don't belong there.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Okay. Has this shaped your environmental views in any way? Does it make you feel like you might want to move a little bit farther away from the water or do anything differently?

PAUL SMITH: No. I'm just going to learn to swim faster.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter]

PAUL SMITH: I don't want to move. We love it here, so. We're only five blocks from the water, but like I said, we've never been flooded before until this crazy time, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Do you think it can happen again?

PAUL SMITH: Well, I'm an optimist and say no, but I'm also a realist and say if it happened once, it can happen again.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And hopefully, I'm not here to see it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because I don't know if we can handle another time. But if we had to, I'm sure we could.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Okay. So, have things returned to normal, or do you think there will be a new normal?

PAUL SMITH: It's not normal, but it's getting there.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I actually received an email from somebody a couple of weeks ago who's in Hazlet. I don't know what the laws are about our kids in schools, but they want the kids to go to school here and they were having problems, so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I sent it to the state, and hopefully -- I haven't heard anything from either side, so. The kids should be going to school here. It's not their fault their home is not…

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay. So they're originally living [unintelligible - 00: 28: 01].

PAUL SMITH: Well, I guess their renting in another town.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Oh, okay.

PAUL SMITH: What I was told but not from the state or from somebody on the school board, if these people signed a lease somewhere, then that's where they're living.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: I don't know all the -- but I did send it to the state. I said we'll look into this because these kids need -- I mean, they don't have a home. They need normalcy.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I had a grandmother tell me three weeks before Christmas, she said to her six-year-old, she says, "What do you want for Christmas?" And most kids will say a bike or something. He said, "I want my house, grandma."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yeah.

PAUL SMITH: That's a six-year-old.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yeah.

PAUL SMITH: He's not thinking about himself.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: You got to love that. It's sad, but at least he's not being selfish.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Are there any changes to your daily life?

PAUL SMITH: Yeah. I have patience. I've been busy.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I've never had patience before, by the way.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: But I do now.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: Because I know things are… I have to realize that we're not going to change Union Beach in a day

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And we have to do what we have to do and do it right.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And I know people are going to have hardships and not all are going to be happy with us, but it's not all our fault either. We want them to get back and we want them to do good, and we can't help it if they were underinsured or -- I mean, that's not our fault.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: We had -- I didn't even think about it. We had a meeting last week, and it was a special meeting because we're getting money to fix up our park. And the one guy gets up who lost his home, and he's 70 something years old. And he's a nice person. And he says, "I understand you want to fix the park, but we're homeless." I didn't think about it after the fact, but until the next day, I said, "You know, what I should've said to him was --" because I didn't really say much of anything. I felt sorry for him and wished him good luck. What I should've said was, "We understand what people are going through, but we can't stop making our improvements. And we're going to get free money to do things, it's half free. We got to put in half to make things better."

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm

PAUL SMITH: We got to continue doing these things. We can't neglect our infrastructure because people are not in their homes.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We still have to fix our beachfront. We have to fix our parks. We got to fix our roads. We have to do these things. Exactly what I should've said to the gentleman, who I talked to after the meeting, but he realized where we're coming from. But sometimes you don't think right away.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: On the spot.

PAUL SMITH: We're going to have -- September 17th, we're building a new playground at our park with the help of KaBOOM. I think they're out of New York.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And they're with United Healthcare or something, I think is helping, and we're going to have from two to twelve. Part of it of ours that we got money in the past from the county and part of our money, but it's going to be from two to twelve and it's going to be a beautiful playground.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And we got to do things like that.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We can't stop. We can't build homes. If we could, we would.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Or we're going to build some because of Robin Hood and Habitat for Humanity. The President's coming and those things, and we have a committee to choose who are the lucky recipients of those.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: And it's going to be based on all their credentials. Nobody on the committee is from the borough.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: One of them is from Gateway Church.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: One of them is RAINE Foundation, and one of them is from Robin Hood. So this way, we got three independent people who don't have ties here. People can't say, "Well, they took care of their friends," because we want it to be fair.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And there are people that are more in need than others, and these people, they have to show all their financials, what insurance gives them, and they have to show everything.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They're not going to get help without showing everything they have. If they got $200,000 in the bank, they're not getting help. You lost everything.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But you got money in the bank. It's going to be based on criteria and it's going to be done right.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And that's the way we want it, help the people that need the help the most.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Are there any problems that you're still facing that you're still dealing with?

PAUL SMITH: Well, yeah. There are still people complaining. We had a lady at the last meeting who said that the state senate knows nothing about Jakeabob's and how they used to have seventy-seven employees, now they [unintelligible - 00: 32: 41] now they're off the bay.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right.

PAUL SMITH: And she was going on and on and on, and then she looks to me and says, "I want my name on your name plate." So I looked at her, I said, "Are you campaigning?" She says, "Yeah." So I said, "Okay." And I've known her since she's a young child, and she's twenty-seven years younger than me. But I realized that it was nothing I can say to help her that will make her change what she was saying, so I didn't say anything.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Because she said the state senate didn't know anything about Jakeabob's. Our senator was in Jakeabob's the first day they opened to wish her well.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And I didn't tell her that because I knew it wouldn't matter. And she's complaining she's not getting any grants because her husband is self-employed. Well, that's got nothing to do with us. And then she says, "And I'm not paying my mortgage because my house isn't worth what the mortgage is." That's got nothing to do with us. And it's going to be [unintelligible - 00: 33: 31] we are doing a reassessment, not voluntarily. We're mandated to do it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But that will help her, hopefully. But she was being bitter, and I knew there was nothing I could say to make her happy, so I didn't say anything.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Sometimes I'm smart enough to know not when to talk, because usually I'm not.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: Usually I say no.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Since the past events, had there been any changes on the outlook of the community?

PAUL SMITH: No. I think it's gotten better.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: Because people want to grow.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: They want to be prettier and stronger and build it up.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Do you think the storm had an impact on the presidential election?

PAUL SMITH: I do, yes.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Do you think the storm will have an impact on the governor election?

PAUL SMITH: It's going to help him.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: The governor didn't hug the president when he got -- helped him with two or three votes anyway.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I think the president still would've won.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But I think it did help him. I think the storm -- not the storm, but the catastrophe of 2011 helped Michael Bloomberg.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I don't think he would've been mayor if it wasn't for September 11th. And that's twelve years ago, but I can't remember who was running against him. I think it was somebody Green or something, but.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: But I believe the other person would've won if it wasn't for -- everybody loves Rudy, and Rudy was backing Bloomberg because of 9/11.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm. Okay. From one town official to another comparing to the past events of Moore, Oklahoma, what's a word of advice that you would be able to pass on from one to another?

PAUL SMITH: Well, what happened in Moore is a little different than us.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm, but it's devastation.

PAUL SMITH: Yeah.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: It's devastation.

PAUL SMITH: It's a little sadder. And Newtown too.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: We were fortunate that's got a Newtown playground. We got Jack Pinto playground.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: At firefighter's park. But what happened in Moore was senseless. What are we going to do? Mother Nature.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: You can't fight Mother Nature. Didn't you ever watch those commercials?

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter]

PAUL SMITH: They've been on since before I was born.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: You can't fight Mother Nature.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: So. We're going to move forward though, right?

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right. Okay.

PAUL SMITH: We're going to get better.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Yes.

PAUL SMITH: Okay.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Of course [laughter].

PAUL SMITH: I want to hear that.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: [Laughter] Of course.

PAUL SMITH: I wanted positive reinforcements.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Of course. I believe it. What do you think the legacy or the central message of the storm is or will be?

PAUL SMITH: Oh, I just think the storm was devastating, and we pray to God we'll never have another one like it.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: The ads out there, Stronger than the Storm, which people are picking, which I don't think they understand the message of it. I don't think the governor needed to be in the ads. But the Stronger than the Storm is all about tourism. It's not about people's homes. It's about come down and visit because -- you know how much money the state makes on that and how much it helps the business community?

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: The message isn't about people that are homeless. And people are blown out of proportion because that's how they run elections.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And unfortunately, some people believe those things. But the whole message of Stronger than the Storm is the Jersey Shore is open, come down and enjoy. And if you read the papers, it's been good but hasn't been as good as it has been in the past year, so. The state depends a lot on that tourism because it's a lot of money.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: Which helps everyone, so, I don't know. I don't like negativity. I'm absolutely positive.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: And we should all be positive.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Right. Okay. So is there anything that I missed that you want to share?

PAUL SMITH: I don't think so.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: I think you covered all the bases.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: I think we're lucky to be alive and we're going to get stronger every day, because it could've been worse. If we had gotten rain -- it didn't rain that much, which most people don't even think about.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: October 29th, we did not get that much rain. This was mostly wind and just… wind, which as I said earlier, tell that to the insurance company. It was wind. It was like a tsunami, the way it came in, which of course we're not expecting off the bay. And obviously those TV shows I saw when it was a tsunami, they all went in the bank vault and survived. Well, guess what? The bank vault here was wrecked, so that's not a true -- they got to do truer things on television, portray a little more truth here.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Mm-hmm.

PAUL SMITH: That vault is not safe…

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: All right.

PAUL SMITH: … from water, because I know we had a safety box. We got a letter. Fortunately I didn't have anything in it. Yeah, so it got flooded.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: The water went into the vault.

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: Okay.

PAUL SMITH: So what year are you in?

TRUDI ANN LAWRENCE: I'm a junior. /AT/rj/es

0:00 - Interview introduction

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:My name is Trudi Ann Lawrence. Today is September 4th

Segment Synopsis: An introduction to the interview with Paul Smith.

Keywords:

Subjects:

0:06 - Brief biography

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Can you state your name?

Segment Synopsis: Smith reveals why he and his wife had chosen to live in the house in which they currently reside. He also describes that his community is very close-knit and stick together in times of crisis.

Keywords: Area; Bedrooms; Build; Community; Cost; Daughters; Economic; Ethnicity; Family; Home; House; Income; Moved; Neighborhood; Occupation; Rooms; Salary; schools; Town; Union Beach; Work

Subjects:


GPS: Union Beach, Nj.
Map Coordinates: 40.446436, -74.178087

2:06 - First word of the storm / day of the storm

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Okay. All right. So when you first heard the storm was coming, what were your expectations?

Segment Synopsis: Smith talks about not expecting anything any worse than Hurricane Irene upon word of Hurricane Sandy. He also goes on to explain that people in his area were not quite as afraid for the storm only because storms of this kind do not usually hit that area as bad as other.

Keywords: Bayfront; Beachfront; Car; Conditions; Emergency; Expect; Flood; Florida; Hit; Home; House; Hurricane Irene; Hurricane Sandy; Insurance companies; Lucky; Nor'easter; Power; Preparations; Rain; Rainy; Safety; Sandy; Storm; Town; Water; Weather; Windy; Work

Subjects:

6:04 - Day after the storm / damages / mood of the community

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:So, when you woke up the next day, did you go to sleep the night of the storm?

Segment Synopsis: Smith describes how him and his family actually watched the water enter the home during the storm. He describes the town (the day after the storm) as appearing as though it has been hit by bombs.

Keywords: Bayfront; Beachfront; Beds; Cats; Community; Damage; Doors; Fix; Flood insurance; Floors; Florida; Furniture; Help; Home; Hurricane Katrina; Insurance companies; Ktrina; Lucky; Mood; Mortgage; Night; Power; Rooms; Shock; Sleep; Storm; Town; TV; Water; Work

Subjects:

8:55 - Resumption of power and trash cleanup / Support from FEMA

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Okay. So who did you contact the first day? Were you able to contact anyone?

Segment Synopsis: Smith describes that the gas lines were out of hand after Hurricane Sandy/ He also goes in-depth about the process of cleaning up.

Keywords: Area; Beach; Borough Hall; Cell phones; Cleanup; Construction; Contact; Curfews; Debris; Election; FEMA; Fire; Firehouse; Flood; Gas; Gas stations; Governor; Help; Home; Hurricane Sandy; Insurance companies; Lived; Looters; Normal; Phone; Police department; Power; President; Protocol; Rooms; Sandy; State; Storm; Street; Support; Town; Trash; Verizon; Work

Subjects:


GPS: Borough Hall (Union Beach, Nj.)
Map Coordinates: 40.439421, -74.179293

13:00 - Coping of the community / aid the community received

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Okay. How did you notice, between yourself and the community members, how did you notice coping?

Segment Synopsis: Smith describes his sense of feeling safe in his neighborhood with the help of the presence of first responders. He also discusses a charity from Taiwan which gave his town $420,000 for recovery. Another organization focusing on schools and based from the tragedy of 9/11 had given every member of the school who was affected by Hurricane Sandy $1,000 gift card.

Keywords: Aid; Blanket; Brother; Church; Clean up; Community; Coping; Country; Devastating; Emergency; Federal government; Flooding; Food; Gateway Church Of Christ; Governor; Help; Home; Insurance; Keansburg; Kids; Lights; Lived; Lost; Money; Positive; Rebuild; Religious communities; Rescue; Roof; Safe; School; State; Storm; Volunteers; Work

Subjects:


GPS: Brooke Avenue (Union Beach, Nj.)
Map Coordinates: 40.447307, -74.164209

20:18 - Losses of the community / response to the storm

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Okay. Can you describe the losses of the town that you've noticed?

Segment Synopsis: Smith discusses how long it took the local businesses to reopen after Sandy hit. He also shares that the response the community got was good from all ends.

Keywords: Beach; Bedrooms; Businesses; Church; Clean; County; Damage; Expect; Federal government; Firehouse; Flooding; Governor; Highway; Home; House; Local government; Losses; Lucky; Mess; Message; Negative; Phone; Positive; Rebuild; Response; State; Stores; Storm; Street; Town; Union Beach; Water; Work

Subjects:

25:13 - Preparations for the storm / president and governor's appearance / environmental views / normalcy

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Do you believe that New Jersey did everything that they could to prepare for the storm adequately?

Segment Synopsis: Smith describes the help from the governor and how he is never happy with the negative information the media portrays. He also states that the appearance of both President Obama and Governor Christie in the area was very beneficial.

Keywords: Appearance; Area; Election; environment; Flooding; Governor; Help; Helping; Higher ground; Home; House; Kids; Media; Moved; Negative; New Jersey; Normal; Normalcy; Politics; Positive; Prepare; President; School; Schools; Sensationalized; Storm; Town; Water; Work; World

Subjects:

28:51 - Changes to daily life and outlook on the community

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Are there any changes to your daily life?

Segment Synopsis: Smith describes making improvements to his neighborhood while others were still trying to get monetary assistance for their homes and how that felt. He also describes how it was to experience the complaining of others in the community at meetings.

Keywords: Beachfront; Building; Church; Community; County; Election; Governor; Help; Helping; Home; House; Impacting; Lost; Lucky; Money; Mortgage; nsurance; President; State; Union Beach; Voting

Subjects:

35:03 - Word of advice / legacy of the storm

Play segmentSegment link

Partial Transcript:Okay. From one town official to another comparing to the past events of Moore, Oklahoma, what's a word of advice that you would be able to pass on from one to another?

Segment Synopsis: Smith states that the disaster in Moore, Oklahoma was different than what happened with Hurricane Sandy, yet the common goal is devastation that needs to be followed by positive reinforcements. He also believes that the Stronger than the Storm ads with the governor were not about what took place but about tourism and making more money.

Keywords: Business; Community; Devastating; Devastation; Election; Fortunate; Governor; Help; Home; Insurance companies; Jersey Shore; Legacy; Message; Money; Moore, Oklahoma; Mother Nature; Positive; Rain; State; Storm; Strong; Survived; Television; Water; Wind

Subjects:

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