McNeese Athletics remains optimistic amid the aftermath of Hurricane Laura

McNeese athletics remain optimistic amid the aftermath of Hurricane Laura

LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - McNeese Athletics is moving forward in their recovery process.

The rebuilding process is underway at McNeese and things are starting to slowly look up.

Track and field head coach Brendon Gilroy says we’ve been through this once, we’ll do it again.

“Dr. Burckel and Dr. Adrian, they’ve been through it with Rita. They are experts at this stuff. They’ve been through it before so they’ll get us through it again.”

Following Hurricane Laura the track facility faired like every other athletic complex at McNeese. And that’s damaged.

“Our equipment is everywhere. Some of it’s across the street. We had a set of bleachers over there. It’s everywhere. More of our bleachers were wrapped around a tree north of the football field.”

But it’s almost been two weeks since the storm and progress has been made. Roofs are being rebuilt, generators are now at every building on campus, and classes are set to start back online Sept. 18.

Coach Gilroy says the McNeese student athletes, if in the area, have been wanting to do anything possible to help get the university back on its feet.

“They’ve been helping wherever they can. They’ve been giving out food and supplies. Roofing. Cleaning debris. The whole nine yards.”

Gilroy says he hasn’t heard anyone in the community have a negative outlook.

Everyone affected by the hurricane has been putting their head down and going to work.

“We just have to work through things, just like everyone else. We’ll make the most of the situation and go with it two steps forward and never take a step back.”

Of course, there isn’t a time limit on when things will start to look normal again in Lake Charles so remaining positive and taking things day by day are very important during recovery.

McNeese is remaining optimistic that their facilities will be up and running for their spring sports. But at this time, the university is searching for an alternate place to hold their basketball games.

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