Big Pine Key man thought he was going to die during Hurricane Irma

Posted at 4:59 PM, Sep 14, 2017

In the middle of debris, destroyed homes, and downed trees, 70-year old Rick Aiken sits in his home in Big Pine Key, waiting for water and power to come back on.

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Aiken, who has lived in the area for 25 years, rode out the storm with his cat.

“I lost the roof in the Florida room and then the water started coming in,” Aiken said. 

The storm surge was quickly rising in his home. He said he watched as the water got higher and higher.

“I told the cat we’re going to die,” Aiken said. 

Before the storm hit, he had put shutters up around the house and had no way out.

“I thought I was going to drown,” Aiken said. “If there was another two or three feet of flood water, there was no place for us to go.”

But then the water finally stopped and slowly disappeared again. Now, four days after Hurricane Irma hit, he said he really needs running water. 

“Even if they turn power back on, I couldn't use it because my house got flooded,” Aiken said. “My car was flooded so I’m kind of stuck here at the house.”

The National Guard came by to check on him and dropped water off for him. 

“I was prepared,” Aiken said. “I just wasn’t prepared for what we got.”