Hurricane Zeta damage still evident in South Mississippi

It’s been just over three months since Hurricane Zeta made landfall, wreaking havoc in South Mississippi and beyond.

Chances are if you just look around, there are still visible signs of the category two storm’s damage, but help is on the way, although the time to apply for it is ticking down.

Sherida Harden works a full-time job and takes care of her 84-year-old father, who she also lives with. She works hard to keep a roof over their head, in this case, one that won’t fall in after Hurricane Zeta damage. “I heard a lot of shingles flying off the house. I heard the tree crashing in my backyard. I also heard boards and stuff ripping from our roof. I had to get a man to come and pay him to put the tarp up for us to try to save some of the roof so we wouldn’t have too much more rain coming in on us.”

Harden’s done all she can do to protect their Gulfport home from further damage, but says they need all the help they can get until repairs can be done. “This is water damage all up in the closet. It’s been leaking.”

Just one reason why the Hardens and many other South Mississippians are applying for FEMA federal disaster assistance. “We have a tarp up but we still have holes in our roof. We also have water damage coming through all of our closets. I’m hoping they can help us.”

But the clock is ticking down. The window for applying for FEMA Zeta disaster assistance closes in just a few weeks. FEMA Media Relations Manager for Hurricane Zeta Recovery in Mississippi Robert Howard said, “That deadline is March 1st. We don’t want people to delay and wait for that deadline because the sooner you apply the sooner you’ll be able to receive assistance. If there’s a delay in your insurance, then FEMA may still be able to help. That’s why it’s important to take that first step and register with FEMA.”

According to FEMA, $5.3 million in Zeta disaster assistance has been granted to Mississippi victims so far.

As for the Hardens, they hope they’ll soon be among those to receive FEMA assistance, getting the help they need to get back on their feet and to rest once again in safe, sound living conditions.

There are several ways you can apply for FEMA Zeta disaster assistance before the March 1st deadline. You can download the FEMA app, go to or call 1-800-612-3362.

Categories: Featured, Harrison County, Local News, News

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