Hurricane Andrew 20th anniversary: A night of horror, according to a woman who lived through it

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Doris Rennert Hochman feared for her life when hurricane Andrew hit Miami-Dade County in August 1992. "It has been a night of horror, literally left me with post traumatic syndrome. I thought we were finished."

Her home in Kendall was damaged. Pictures of the torn roof and uprooted trees bring back the memories.

"I hear people talking about tornadoes, how they sound like a train coming, well this was a coming train for four straight hours. This train was coming non-stop for hours with the house almost like a balloon in and out, no electricity after one a.m."

The category 5 storm left a path of destruction, totaling billions of dollars-- more than sixty people lost their lives.

"The wind was scary. We couldn't even sit, we were just standing up with transistor radios in our ears just to get through the night," she said.

After the storm passed, Doris and her husband needed food. They drove from Miami Dade County to Palm Beach County, and found a place in Lake Worth to wash their clothes and buy food and gas.

They liked what they saw and a few years later purchased a home in West Palm Beach.

Now, 20 years after Andrew's devastating effects, she offers this advice: "Have a plan, have it ready in advance, take care of it; however, I don't know of a lot of people doing that."

She wants others to learn from her experience and is more than willing to talk about it. "I am good at that, if they will listen. Some people don't listen, some do because I have been there, done that."

 

Print this article Back to Top

Comments