Three months after the storm, the Bolivar Peninsula still looked as if it had been strafed by B-52 bombers, or even like a Texas Gulf Coast version of post-tsunami Sri Lanka. Whole blocks of beachfront homes had simply vanished without trace, while timbers were all that remained of others. (Most of Bolivar hadn't vanished, of course. It had just washed to the mainland in Chambers County, some 12 miles away.) Local landmarks were upside down, or had drifted down the road from where they once were. A huge junkyard of ruined cars and household appliances welcomed visitors to one end of the peninsula, a sight that warned of the devastation that extended all the way to the eastern... More >>>
From the top floor of his Stingaree Restaurant, local attorney and restaurateur Jim Vratis is helping lead the Bolivar Peninsula back from the brink. Behind him is Goat Island, where several of the area's storm victims washed up.