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Family recalls moving to Tucson after Hurricane Katrina

14 years ago Cabrina Hayes and her daughters moved to Tucson.
Posted at 10:47 PM, Sep 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-03 01:47:50-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — 14 years ago Cabrina Hayes and her daughters moved to Tucson.

"We loaded the dogs, my mom, three kids, my husband, my sister into two minivans and headed to Mississippi."

Their home was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina just after they left Arabi, Louisiana just east of New Orleans.

As Katrina moved inland the family kept moving west, leaving their home behind.

"There was like not even a kitchen anymore, it was just like insulation and like the wood pieces of the walls, it was just, the ceiling fan was gone, there was a gator in our pool," said Chelsea Zayas, Hayes' second oldest daughter.

Their trip finally ended in Tucson.

"The people, they're nice, the southern people down South, they're nice people, people up here are nice people," said Brianna Zayas, Hayes' oldest daughter.

"Ms. McIntyre, yeah, from Ford (Elementary), she was probably the most helpful out of everything," Chelsea said.

The family moved with nothing, no clothes, no furniture.

"She she gave it to me and my older sister while we were in school...sorry (sobs).>

Louisiana's home but the family says they're happy to stay put.

"Tucson is definitely home to me because it's where my mom and dad and my sisters are," Alyssa Zayas said, Hayes' youngest daughter.

"One day, sure, I'd love to go back home but for now Tucson is home," Hayes said.