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rtilryarms
11-01-2005, 09:35 PM
Dear Fellow SOS Writers, Editors, Submitters and reviewers; all the lurkers et al,

When we started this project to aid in the recovery of hurricane victims, little did I know that my area would be the next one ravaged by disaster. We are so very fortunate in South Florida that we had very few deaths, but even one is a horrendous loss to the loved ones left behind.
We pride ourselves in the toughest building codes in the nation and for once people are relieved rather than complaining about the extra costs. This alone contributed to the low number of deaths and injuries.
Still, we suffered a lot of damage and inconvenience. Trees were felled blocking access and egress to and from homes and businesses. Over 7 million people were without power for 4 Ė 6 days, up to 2 million will not get power back for another couple of weeks. Water lines were broken and most houses suffered different degrees of roof and other damage (I would have said ALL houses but I didnít lose one roof shingle, heh).

Having a submission approved to be included in Stories of Strength was already such an honor because I felt so helpless at home during the chaos following Katrina that I feel even more proud that I have the opportunity now to pull double duty to help others in my community.
This was a career week for me; A resume builder. Unfortunately, the current company probably wants me to stay forever now. Unfortunate only because I like to share my knowledge and move to new adventures as often as I can.
Perhaps the latest events, plus my friends here at Absolutewrite will finally convince me to settle down, and just write about the fun I had instead of looking for more.

Just a quick note to thank you, on behalf of the unfortunate souls who will benefit locally and elsewhere as a result of all of this hard work.

Thank you my friends!

Mike Hawkins

ChunkyC
11-01-2005, 09:55 PM
C'mere, ya big lug.... http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/images/smilies/EmoteHug2.gif

awatkins
11-01-2005, 10:49 PM
:kiss:

rtilryarms
11-02-2005, 08:47 PM
I cannot start sending press releases etc. until i get cable and broadband back up at home. If I can't get on internet by this weekend, I'll get permission to use my work addy.

These guys owe me big time after all.

September skies
11-02-2005, 08:55 PM
:kiss: Bless you.

AmyDoodle
11-02-2005, 10:29 PM
Mike, Take care.

It's so good to see your voice.

Robin
11-02-2005, 10:37 PM
Mike,

Hugs to you, sweetie. Need any canned cheese?
Seriously, please let us know if there's anything we can get for you.
:Hug2:
Robin

Paint
11-02-2005, 10:53 PM
God bless, so glad you are safe!

Unique
11-02-2005, 11:26 PM
Did I take your letter to mean you've given up fun?

Good heavens!

I do visit Florida from time to time and was planning on looking you up. Do keep at least one spare can of fun in your sock drawer. Then give it up!


Stay safe, be well, keep writing.

>''<

MarkPettus
11-03-2005, 05:36 AM
Mike, if I can help you in any way, let me know.

Vanessa
11-03-2005, 05:51 AM
Mike that was sweet of you. Here's a :), then a :kiss:, and then a big ole' :Hug2:, because no matter what, the :Sun:always shines after the clouds have gone away. Stay strong. Your personality has always kept us intact, and that's commendable. Please let us know, let me know if there's anything I can do. Please.

rtilryarms
11-03-2005, 07:39 PM
Thanks everyone!

I am quite OK. And no, I do NOT need any more canned cheese...believe me when I tell you it has been out of the can twice now...


Basically, on the personal side, my family was way prepared for this. People think I am strange when I say we were a little disappointed when the lights came back on over the weekend. we were enjoying the Robinson Carusoesque existence we eked out of the event.
Of course everyone thinks I am strange anyway!

Professionally, I worked 'round the clock to get the business up and running in order for our minimum 70 people (out of 545) to come in, WITHIN 16 HOURS, and try to keep customer service inventories at a manageable volume while we executed the rest of the disaster recovery planning.
Everything went perfectly according to the plan and MUCH more. We handled all of our claims, service telemarketing and other work while only sending one department off site, to a site under contract as per our plan!

What my team went through and the reasons for it will become an essay for the Stories of Strength sequel i am confident we will someday publish.


Thanks again everyone for your well wishes. I feel good today ( I feel good every day).

Mike

JennaGlatzer
11-03-2005, 10:38 PM
Every time I tried to post this, the board crashed yesterday...

I :heart: you, Mike. :)

rtilryarms
11-03-2005, 11:35 PM
Every time I tried to post this, the board crashed yesterday...

I :heart: you, Mike. :)

( )blush!!!( )

Back atcha Jenna!