Lauren Hodges

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AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Just a few blocks away from a stretch of busy highway in LaPlace, La. — about 30 miles northwest of New Orleans — Donald Caesar Jr., 49, walks down the street he grew up on and has lived his entire life. Even a month after Hurricane Ida pummeled Louisiana as a Category 4 storm, this street and many others in the hardest-hit areas of the state are still completely unrecognizable.

At the moment, Tammy and Benny Alexie are staying in a cream-colored house that overlooks the Mississippi River delta. The house survived the flooding of Hurricane Ida with minimal damage because it stands on stilts. An expansive deck in the back is covered with an insect net on all four sides, a long wooden table in the middle, and a propane grill in the corner where the Alexies have been making their meals for the past six weeks. Their three children and two grandchildren are staying with them.

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SARAH MCCAMMON, HOST:

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SARAH MCCAMMON, HOST:

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