LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Very little of downtown Lake Charles was left untouched when Hurricane Laura swept through the city.
Gigi’s Downtown is just one of the businesses impacted.
Del Prudhomme, of Gigi’s, says it was shocking returning to the gym and seeing the overwhelming amount of damage left behind by the storm.
“It’s totally destroyed, but it’s okay. We’re gonna build back, we’re gonna be stronger than ever. We’ll take a moment to breathe.”
Prudhomme says he’s grateful to have the opportunity to rebuild which might not have been possible if the night had played out differently.
He says he had originally planned to sleep on the second floor of the gym, which is completely gone now.
“That was going to be the last, worst decision of my life. I honestly would’ve died in there. I didn’t want to drive too far away, but God told me ‘hey, go ahead and get out of here’.”
Gigi’s Downtown may now be a pile of rubble, bricks, and debris but Prudhomme says he’s not discouraged. He says Southwest Louisiana is strong and he’s ready to begin the journey towards healing and coming back bigger better and greater than ever before.
“I was here for Rita, I know how long it took to shape back up after that one. This is not going to be a quick, speedy turn around. We’re in for the long haul. We already have that mindset right now. This is going to be long, it’s going to be tough, but this is what we do.”