The Year of Sandy: Staten Island

A sign outside a house in Tottenville, Staten Island reads: "THANK YOU ALLSTATE HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE. APPROVED FOR $165.35 IN DAMAGES. We are in 'Good Hands'!!"
An enlarged copy of an insurance check is posted on the garage of a boarded-up house in Tottenville, Staten Island. A sign on the second floor said “THANK YOU ALLSTATE HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE. APPROVED FOR $165.35 IN DAMAGES. We are in ‘Good Hands’!!” 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.

Staten Island

The crunch of shovels digging into mulch fills the air as a couple dozen volunteers work on beautifying a little corner of Tottenville, Staten Island.

But when Anthony Molkay looks around, he doesn’t just see a quiet cul-de-sac a stone’s throw from the beach. He remembers.

“It was hell,” says the 21-year-old College of Staten Island student, looking up the street as if seeing the sand that stretched a block and a half inland, past smashed windows and mountains of ruined belongings that residents had dredged up from their basements.

Unlike Brooklyn and Queens, by and large, Staten Island is a borough of homeowners rather than renters. It raised the stakes for people trying to recover — which also turned them into fierce advocates for themselves and their neighbors. And they were vocal when they felt they were not getting their fair share.

Just a few blocks from the volunteers is a house with most of its first floor still boarded up after the floodwaters raged through. A banner emblazoned across the second floor says “”THANK YOU ALLSTATE HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE. APPROVED FOR $165.35 IN DAMAGES. We are in ‘Good Hands’!!” A blown-up copy of the check is displayed on the garage door, listing hail and wind damage as the reason for the reimbursement.

Very few people had flood insurance, meaning some have turned to buyouts in flood-prone areas like Oakwood Beach. The first such house was demolished only last week.

“There’s still a lot of houses waiting for the funding and the loans,” Molkay says. “One thing I’ve noticed is that when there’s a national tragedy, people forget about it as soon as there’s another national tragedy.”

Check out the slideshow below.

The Year of Sandy: The Rockaways

The Year of Sandy: Coney Island

Follow Emily Johnson on Twitter @emilyjreports



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.