411 Operator remembers taking Hurricane Katrina calls - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

411 Operator remembers taking Hurricane Katrina calls

By Brittany Pieper – email

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) –When Hurricane Katrina hit the national media interviewed many of the survivors. Sitting in her office, at the 411 call center in Shreveport, Bessie Tyler took the calls and heard the stories of many who would not make it out of the city alive.

"A lot of them were people who were up on their roof tops that wanted us to try to get somebody to rescue them," said Tyler. 

She said the most difficult and haunting calls came from those who had accepted their inevitable fate and just wanted someone to talk to.

"She said I'm in a nursing home, and it's flooded. All the staff has left, and the water is up on my bed. I am bed ridden. I know I'm going to die. She said, will you pray with me, and so I prayed with her," said Tyler remembering one call.

Tyler took down information of where people were to try and get them help, but for the most part all she could do was listen.

"To hear the panic and the hurt in their voices just gave me nightmares. I left work and I had to stop on the side of the road and cry. When I got home I cried, and I can't watch Katrina film without thinking about all the many people that I talked to and wondering how many for them made it out alive," said Tyler. 

The untold stories of those whose lives were washed away in Katrina's flood waters replay in Tyler's mind. Their faith strengthened her own, and on this anniversary weekend, they are not forgotten. 

©2010 KSLA-TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Rain has moved out, and now sunny skies remain for the start of this week

    FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Rain has moved out, and now sunny skies remain for the start of this week

    Sunday, April 30 2017 5:07 PM EDT2017-04-30 21:07:39 GMT
    Sunny skies MondaySunny skies Monday

    Through tonight, skies will continue to clear. All the rain from this morning has moved out and we should not see any more rain for the next couple days. With the skies clearing, it will allow temperatures to fall overnight. Lows will be in the middle to lower 50s. Winds have also calmed down and they will blow out of the west at about 5-10 mph. Monday and Tuesday will be sunny and we should not see any rain. 

    More >>

    Through tonight, skies will continue to clear. All the rain from this morning has moved out and we should not see any more rain for the next couple days. With the skies clearing, it will allow temperatures to fall overnight. Lows will be in the middle to lower 50s. Winds have also calmed down and they will blow out of the west at about 5-10 mph. Monday and Tuesday will be sunny and we should not see any rain. 

    More >>
  • April 29 election news

    April 29 election news

    Sunday, April 30 2017 4:52 PM EDT2017-04-30 20:52:48 GMT
    (Source: KPLC)(Source: KPLC)

    April 29 election stories

    More >>

    April 29 election stories

    More >>
  • Multiple reports of flooding in Oakdale from early Sunday storms

    Multiple reports of flooding in Oakdale from early Sunday storms

    Sunday, April 30 2017 2:48 PM EDT2017-04-30 18:48:11 GMT
    (Source: Melanie Dennis)(Source: Melanie Dennis)
    There are multiple reports of flooding in Oakdale as the result of early Sunday morning storms, according to the Allen Parish Sheriff's Office. A home on Hwy 10 East in Oakdale was also hit by a possible tornado, said the Sheriff's Office. Beauregard Electric and Cleco are also reporting numerous power outages in the parish on their online power outage maps. The Sheriff's Office is assessing the situation. KPLC will have more information as it becomes avail...More >>
    There are multiple reports of flooding in Oakdale as the result of early Sunday morning storms, according to the Allen Parish Sheriff's Office. A home on Hwy 10 East in Oakdale was also hit by a possible tornado, said the Sheriff's Office. Beauregard Electric and Cleco are also reporting numerous power outages in the parish on their online power outage maps. The Sheriff's Office is assessing the situation. KPLC will have more information as it becomes avail...More >>
Powered by Frankly