Hamilton Beach was one of the areas hardest hit by Superstorm Sandy and two years later, some residents are still not back in their homes.
On the storms’s anniversary Wednesday, the neighborhood came together for a candle light vigil to support those who are still displaced and give thanks to all those who helped during the harsh times.
“In our community, Sandy brought out the best of our people,” said Roger Gendron, president of the Hamilton Beach Civic Association. “Groups that came into help two years ago are still here helping today. It has been a constant flow of generosity.”
The vigil was held at the West Hamilton Beach Fire Department, a group that was and is “a vital life line to the community,” Gendron remarked. Over 50 residents, and local and city officials were present to take a moment of silence for all those who are still affected by the aftermath of the storm.
“If anything good came from the storm it was that it showed the strong sense of community,” Councilman Eric Ulrich said. “We will be here every year lighting candles until everyone in this community that was displaced is back in their home.”
The ceremony was led by Father Anthony Rucando of Our Lady of Grace Parish. He led the residents of the neighborhood in a tearful prayer ceremony that was joined by the director of Build It Back, Amy Peterson.
“I am inspired everyday by the strength of communities like yours,” Peterson said. “We are doing everything we can and are committed to moving you forward in the process.”