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S.I. Woman Struggles To Cope With Loss Of Husband, Daughter Six Months After Sandy

"It's Very Hard. It's Very Emotional. Every Day Is A Struggle"
A memorial to Patricia Dresch's husband and daughter in Tottenville, Staten Island - April 29, 2013 (credit: Jim Smith / WCBS 880)

A memorial to Patricia Dresch’s husband and daughter in Tottenville, Staten Island – April 29, 2013 (credit: Jim Smith / WCBS 880)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A Staten Island woman is marking six months since superstorm Sandy by mourning the deaths of her husband and daughter.

The rain fell Monday on a small memorial of weathered candles and a deflated balloon in Tottenville where Patricia Dresch lost her husband George and 13-year-old daughter Angela.

“It’s very hard. It’s very emotional. Every day is a struggle,” Dresch told WCBS 880’s Jim Smith.

The Dresch’s home was swept off its foundation during the Oct. 29 storm with the family inside.

George and Angela were killed. Dresch survived and was rescued with severe hypothermia after spending hours in the raging flood waters. She spent a week in the hospital.

“I was beaten up, I was black and blue from head to toe,” Dresch said. “I still have the scars. I’m scarred for life.”

Dresch has been staying at a house where she works at Our Lady Help of Christians Church on the same street she used to live, but said she’s never been back to the end of the block to the water’s edge.

“I’ve never gone down there. I lived through that night and that was it. I’m never going back down there,” she said.

Over the past six months, she has been keeping the memories of her husband and daughter close to her heart.

“I talk to my family every day,” she said. “There’s not a day that goes by [that] I don’t talk to them. I cry with them…I pray. God is my inspiration.”

Dresch is now waiting on a buyout, wanting to stay in Tottenville and rebuild her life.

“I look forward to the future and what my next phase is going to be and it’s very scary not knowing what it’s going to be like,” she said.

On Tuesday, Dresch will buy a cake and spend the day at the cemetery on what would have been her daughter’s 14th birthday.

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