PINE ISLAND, Fla. — It's been six months since life changed on Pine Island. Hurricane Ian's storm surge and fierce winds battered the area, destroying homes, businesses and taking precious lives.
The area was cut off from the mainland during the hurricane. The bridge that passes through Matlacha was completely washed away.
People that sheltered in place, from Saint James City and Bookelia and Matlacha were on their own for days. Cut off until someone could reach them by boat.
The state was able to quickly repair the bridge and roadway and what our crews saw when they were able to drive onto the island for the first time was devastating.
Fox Four Anchor, Amy Wegmann, has covered Pine Island extensively since Ian hit and on the six month anniversary wanted to go back to the community to see how people are still working to recover.
Today, the Matlacha Hookers and the Greater Pine Island Alliance were hard at work again, just like they have been since the day the storm hit, helping people. The final supply giveaway was held at the United Methodist Church near the Pine Island Matlacha
More than 100 residents lined up and waited for hours to get things like drywall, plywood, nut and bolts and bedding. All of it donated to them from the amazing organizations on the island.
Most of the supplies were gone by the end of the supply drive and while some took the materials home and got straight to work, others are storing them, waiting patiently for other repairs to happen so they can put the interior of their home back together.
Six months may seem like a long time, but for the people living the recovery after Ian, they know they have so much further to go.
If you need assistance and you live on Pine Island things are shifting into a long-term recovery process now. You can find more information when you go to gpialliance.org