It is hard to believe, but today is the second anniversary of Hurricane Irene making landfall in North Carolina. This storm blasted many of the long-held thoughts about Category 1 storms and coastal flooding. Irene was different. As a damage assessment volunteer, I observed first-hand and heard stories from residents about flooding in areas “that had never flooded.” Many trees, structures, and utilities that had survived recent significant storms such as Bertha, Fran, and Floyd, and older structures that had survived many storms of the twentieth century were flooded and significantly damaged. Irene left a wake of damage in North Carolina from which residents are still recovering.
Please pick up Wednesday’s edition of the Tideland News for an article by Brad Rich about Elmer. Brad knew Elmer from his work on Sugarloaf Island in Morehead City. Brad did a great job of taking my ramblings on the phone and turning them into a wonderful article about my dad.
My apologies to all Stewards who were not mentioned. As you might imagine, my dad did so much and met so many wonderful people, I couldn’t list everyone who has contributed to his efforts from memory. Even so, Brad had to pare down the number of people I mentioned to make the article fit the space allotted. That said, I know most Stewards are like my dad. They don’t necessarily seek recognition. They just want the world to be a better place and each in his or her own way is working to do just that. Thanks!
Thanks to all who showed up on a forecast rainy Saturday for the Tribute Paddle for Elmer Eddy! The trip was arranged by Joanne Somerday and the TRPC. We had a great turn-out and a great time! Special thanks to Mike Banks of the White Oak River Campground who has always let Stewards launch for free because of our clean-up efforts.
At the campground, we shared personal recollections of Elmer and trips with Elmer. John, Jack, Sam, and Nick Eddy shared experiences growing up with Elmer. Then it was on to the water!
The weather forecast was 90% chance of rain. How fitting it was that we chose to go forward with the trip, just as Elmer would have done! “Ninety percent chance? That means there’s a 10% chance it won’t rain, so let’s go!” Elmer might have reasoned. Yes, it did rain, but not significantly until everyone neared Haywood Landing. The rain did little to dampen the tribute paddle.
As the main group made their way downriver, John, Sam, and Nick Eddy made their way upriver by jon boat. Everyone arrived at Dixon Field almost at the same time. We lunched and visited more there, then some of the group departed. The sky was looking ominous.
On the entire trip from the White Oak River Campground to Haywood Landing, very little trash was found. Most of the trash was found from the campground to the access at Dixon Field. The White Oak River largely remains clean from Dixon Field to Haywood Landing!
Thanks again to all who attended and sent photos. I will update this post or make a new one with photos soon. –John