Letters

The morning after …

We were awoken around 12:30 a.m. to hard, very long house shaking. It seemed to continue forever. I laid in bed waiting, and realized the ceiling fan was swaying right above my body and not stopping. Being from California and used to earthquakes, I simply shifted position over to the side of the bed while waiting it out, thinking “At least the fan is not on.” As I was snuggling back up with my pillow, my phone suddenly went off with a tsunami warning to get to higher ground. What an eerie sound.

My first ever tsunami warning alert sent a sheer motherly panic through my spine. Our home is located right off the beach. I jumped out of bed, went straight to my son Jonah’s room, saying “Tsunami warning! Get dressed. We have to go!” I threw on sweats over my pj’s. We met at the front door seconds later and drove off.

I said out loud, “What is the Tsunami route?” “I don’t know,” was Jonah’s response, “Maybe Skyline?”

I drove timidly straight to Baycrest Lookout where dozens of other vehicles joined us within minutes, all of us with our vehicles running as the temp was 19 degrees and snowing. Every vehicle had the glow of cell phones being used.

I was thankful to hear the familiar voice of Terry Rensel come over the air of our local radio station KBBI giving us updates every few minutes and also hoping he was in high enough ground himself.

At the same time our local dedicated reporters, Michael Armstrong and Megan Pacer, were posting what knowledge they had on Facebook. Talk about dedication, the two of them went straight to the newsroom to report, which is in the tsunami path. (Geez you two, I love you and your dedication, but you had me a bit worried.) Before getting these two news feeds, we had no knowledge of what was going on except for the warning.

It was soon reported the Homer High School was opened for refuge and the times the tsunami would hit Kodiak and Homer.

While searching for news of the tsunami hitting Kodiak, I found a live feed from Larry Pestrikoff of Kodiak (Thank you for that Larry!) At the same time, it seemed the whole community was up and on social media. Posts from all over Homer and Anchor Point were popping up, letting people know they will “leave the light on,” inviting anyone in need to come to the safe haven of their homes.

I waited till after 3 a.m. and the news that Kodiak did not experience a tsunami before I allowed myself to sleep.

I retreated to the warmth of my beautiful friend Deb Moseley’s home, who insisted I get my arse over there to rest and woke up this morning to hot coffee and Deb’s kids getting ready for school. The schools announced a two-hour delayed start this morning. Other than that, as I drove home I noticed the community is continuing as usual.

The tsunami warning has passed and we are left with a warm sense of community, local dedication and our personal stories. Other than feeling the scare still in my bones, it’s a calm day with low tides. It was a very serious exercise that leaves us all better prepared for the worst and the knowledge we are not alone.

Kelli Parker

Vietnam vet give thanks

My name is Jim Nelson. I have lived in Homer for 25 years. I am not one to write letters like this, but I just had to say something. On Tuesday the 16th of January, I was at the post office to send a letter. I held the door open for an elderly lady, myself being 68 years old. She said, “I saw your front license plate,” and asked “Are you a Vietnam veteran?” I replied proudly, “Yes ma’am, I am. I was in the U.S. Navy for four years starting in 1967, then transferred to the U.S. Army for another 10.” She told me her son was lost in Vietnam, and then she went behind me and said, “It would be my pleasure to hold the door for you.”

I cannot tell you the pride I felt at that moment. Thank you all that support our military. God bless you all.

Jim Nelson

Homer Foundation supports Water Trail brochure

The Friends of Kachemak Bay State Park-Water Trail Committee wishes to thank the Homer Foundation and the Jenson Fund for supporting our effort to edit, update and print the 2017 version of the popular Kachemak Bay Water Trail brochure with map. The brochure identifies water trail sites, State Park trailheads and associated amenities. It is utilized by visitors and locals alike to help plan their “Adventures Beyond The End of the Road.” The brochure is distributed by the Homer Chamber of Commerce and the Islands and Ocean Visitor Center. Copies can be found at the big rock marking the Water Trail launch site by the fishing hole on the Spit. The Homer Foundation’s wide-ranging support of community projects benefits all of us and is greatly appreciated. Thank You Homer Foundation!

Sincerely,

Dave Brann , Robert Archibald and Mako Haggerty

Friends of Kachemak Bay State Park

Kachemak Bay Water Trail Committee

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