Former Niles man ‘ducking and dodging’ hurricanes

Published 1:34 am Tuesday, September 14, 2004

By By SPIROS GALLOS / Niles Daily Star
NILES - Terry Redman considers himself a very lucky man.
Redman, a former Niles school teacher who now lives in Sarasota County, Fla., has dodged hurricanes Charley and Frances, and it looks like hurricane Ivan will miss Redman when it comes ashore sometime Thursday morning.
Ivan battered the western tip of Cuba Tuesday with winds reaching 160 mph, leaving downed power lines, uprooted trees, and massive flooding in its wake.
Hurricane Charley missed Sarasota Co. to the south by about 25 miles, Frances missed to the east about 75 miles, and with the current projected path, Ivan should miss to west by about 100 miles, Redman said.
Despite Charley and Frances missing his home, Redman said there is no shortage of damage in the area. One neighbor had downed trees in his yard and the top blown off of his boat dock, and another had his pool cage severely damaged.
While no physical damage has been done to his house, Redman said that the hurricane season has put a severe mental strain on residents.
Redman said he doesn't plan to unpack any valuables or take down the boards until the hurricane season passes.
The damage has also put Redman's professional life on hold. Redman is the supervisor of the Sarasota County Parks Department, and said that all new projects have been put on hold.
Redman said most of the clean up will involve replacing picnic tables and repairing boardwalks.
Redman thinks that the hurricanes in Florida will affect the entire United States. Economic analysts seem to agree, as they've already said that Florida's citrus industry might not recover from the rash of hurricanes.
Analysts have also cited that Florida's tourism industry may take a hit as those looking to vacation in Florida may look to other destinations to avoid the hurricanes.
Local schools have also suffered according to Redman. Since the hurricanes began, schools have been open sporadically, often being closed to be used as shelters.
Redman and his wife have volunteered at a shelter in Charolotte County, helping local families who need to stay at the shelter.
Redman said that while most of his neighborhood is without power, many neighbors, including Redman, have generators to keep them going.
Some neighbors are even sharing their portable power, running extension cords across the street to nearby homes, Redman said.