The Year of Sandy: Coney Island

One year after the storm, most residents of Coney Island are back in their homes.
One year after the storm, residents of Coney Island seek to turn the page on a difficult year. Credit: Emily Johnson

The Year of Sandy

One year ago, when the Atlantic Ocean receded to its proper place, the devastation it had wrought was all too apparent in the morning light. Help poured in from out of state, from other parts of the city, from neighbors.

But relief efforts of that scale never last, and winter wore on. For people from Coney Island to Staten Island to the Rockaways, Sandy didn’t fade away when the next disaster hit.

It was a long year.

Coney Island

A sign outside the Coney Island Gospel Assembly proclaims Sunday “A day of faith, hope and love.”

For event manager Sharon Lundy, it’s a day of renewal.

“This is commemorating the resiliency of this community after Sandy,” says Lundy, a parishioner who lost everything on the first floor of her home in the storm.

On the surface, Coney Island looks like it always has. But despite highly visible progress — Nathan’s Famous is back and better than ever, the Mermaid Parade went on as scheduled, the aquarium is repaired and the library at long last opened its doors last week — about a quarter of the area’s 48,000 residents reported after the storm that their homes were ruined, according to FEMA.

Residents and small business owners are still wrangling with government agencies over limited funding. Visibility is a problem: A recent $2 million donation from the National Football League left Coney Island out completely.

Sunday’s event marks the end of a difficult year in Coney Island, a sometimes-forgotten community where sinkholes remain a lingering problem. A woman from the Red Cross is inside the sanctuary, doing a presentation on disaster preparedness. The Mercy Chefs are on hand to feed thousands of families, just as they did after the storm.

This time, however, it will be a sit-down dinner — a fitting way to turn the page on a year that, if nothing else, brought a renewed sense of closeness to a formerly tight-knit, classically New York community that had drifted apart in recent years.

“It’s been like old times,” Lundy said. “It did bring the community closer together. And it’s lasted: We just borrowed a generator for this event from my neighbor.”

 Check out the slideshow below.

The Year of Sandy: The Rockaways

The Year of Sandy: Staten Island

Follow Emily Johnson on Twitter @emilyjreports




News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Mayor pledges lower greenhouse gas emissions from New…

Just hours before the start of the People’s Climate March on Sunday, and two days ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit, Mayor Bill de…

Local

More than 310,000 attend People's Climate March

More than 310,000 people flooded midtown Manhattan Sunday with one main message ahead of the United Nation’s Climate Summit: do something about climate change. Activists…

National

The best places to see the Northern Lights…

A large solar storm hit the Earth's atmosphere and will tonight illuminate the skies with aurora borealis -- also known as the Northern Lights.

Local

Police officer killed Sunday morning Bronx crash, 8…

One NYPD police officer was killed and eight other officers were injured early Sunday morning when the van they were traveling in crashed  in the…

Television

'How to Get Away with' mischaracterizing Shondra Rhimes

Shonda Rhimes read Alessandra Stanley's New York Times piece about her being "an angry black woman" and "a romance writer" and it did not sit well with her.

Gossip

New nude celebrity selfies leak … and Clay…

A new batch of nude selfies of Rihanna, Kim Kardashian, Vanessa Hudgens, Lake Bell and Avril Lavigne hit the web and Clay Aiken has something to say!

Television

James Spader's route to villainy on "The Blacklist"

In honor of the second season premiere of "The Blacklist" tonight, where James Spader plays good guy/bad guy Raymond “Red” Reddington, it’s a good time to look back at Spader’s…

Television

True Detective

NFL

Oday Aboushi ready for increased role, and to…

Oday Aboushi might feel comfortable enough to engage in some trash talk the next time he is on the field.

NFL

Giants vs. Texans: 3 things to watch

The Giants host the surprising Texans (2-0) in what may already be a must-win game for Big Blue.

NFL

Eric Decker misses practice again, could miss Monday

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker missed practice Thursday as he continues to rehab a hamstring injury suffered last Sunday.

MLB

Derek Jeter still focused on baseball as final…

Derek Jeter has effectively hid his emotions for 20 years in the Bronx.

Career

Here's how to make the most of visit…

You’re primped, you’re looking polished, you’re prepared with a stack of resumes. Job fair hunters, unite! There are a few things to keep in mind…

Education

Learn how to study effectively and stop cramming…

Picture this: It’s midterm week, and college students everywhere are trying to frantically memorize all of the math formulas, political theories and historical facts that…

Parenting

How motherhood inspired Bethenny Frankel's new book

Bethenny Frankel's new children's book is about how her daughter and dog didn't always get alone.

Parenting

A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.