This Was Their Life’s Work – Jackie Rebholz

Blog Pic-5-XLNatural disasters like Superstorm Sandy cause some strange situations, and I saw plenty of them when I got to the Jersey Shore. There was the broken house sitting on top of a two ton army truck and the 100-foot-high roller coaster sitting in the ocean so perfectly intact it looked like a dozen screaming teenagers had just given it a ride.

And strange situations lead to strange questions like the one asked by Jackie Rebholz about her family home – “How do you take a house out of a bay?” For thirty years her parent’s home sat on the small finger of land between Barnegat Bay and the Atlantic Ocean in the borough of Mantoloking. When Sandy hit and the barrier island was breached, Jackie’s house was washed off terra firma and into the bay. And there it sat for eight months, eerily intact just like that roller coaster, standing not so firm and raising many strange questions.

Natural disasters also lead to some strange emotions. There’s fear of course, some anger, a sense of loss no doubt and on darker days maybe even a sense of hopelessness. But to my surprise even on the darkest day one can feel a “sense of relief” – so Jackie told me as we watched a crew tear down her family home, taking it from the bay and from her family forever.

Why was she relieved? Well, it’s best to hear it in Jackie’s own words, and you can do that here:

http://video.pbs.org/video/2365067188/

I think you might be surprised by what she has to say.

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