NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Along the Brooklyn waterfront, piles of debris lay strewn about from homes soaked with sea water and sand during Superstorm Sandy.
As CBS 2’s Chris Wragge reported Monday, the recovery was a struggle, particularly in communities such as Sea Gate.
The neighborhood was without power as the temperatures dropped, and looters were out in force. Homes on the once-pristine beachfront were left looking like ruins from a past civilization.
But beach officials and some local officials insisted that the area would come back stronger.
“I never imagined that it would be that bad, really,” said state Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny (D-Brooklyn), who represents Coney Island and Dyker Heights. “It was devastating – standing on the balcony, looking at all the water coming to Sea Gate from right here where we’re standing now, it was terrible, I have to say.”
On Coney Island, the situation was not much better. Power was out in much of the area, as long lines of people waited for food and other necessities.
U.S. Department of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) made appearances in the area Monday.
“They still need help. There’s so much need because the electricity hasn’t been restored,” Gillibrand said. “If you talk about people who are freezing in their apartments tonight, where temperatures may dip below freezing, it’s a real health concern. So folks are here looking for food, looking for warmth; they’re looking for blankets, mittens, gloves, hats – they’re just looking to keep warm. So everybody has to work harder.”
Back in Sea Gate, one neighbor said earlier that he wasn’t sure the community could even survive. Michael Paladino, a 22-year resident of Sea Gate, spoke with CBS 2 this past Saturday morning.
“It’s sad, because I really don’t know – it’s really a nice community. It’s a lot of fun during the summer. People enjoy it,” he said, “and I don’t know if it’s going to come back the way it was. Without a government seawall here, I don’t know if we’re going to be able to survive if these weather changes continue.”
But neighbors said they would tough it out and bring the community back to the way it was.
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