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Breezy Point, struck by Hurricane Sandy and fire, still recovering

April 29, 2013 at 4:32 PM   |   Comments

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NEW YORK, April 29 (UPI) -- Six months after Hurricane Sandy and a six-alarm fire struck the Breezy Point section of New York City, the community is still recovering.

The tightly-knit community in the borough of Queens is only beginning to put its town back together, NBC reported, noting the storm last October brought Category 1 winds, flooding and a fire that engulfed 126 homes. Nearly 500 homes were destroyed or are scheduled to be demolished.

"There's voids where homes used to be," said Point Breeze Fire Department Chief Marty Ingram.

Local groups are engaged in relief efforts, including the Graybeards, a non-profit organization founded in nearby Rockaway Beach founded after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack that claimed the lives of 70 Rockaway residents.

"They're nowhere near normal," said Graybeards president Steve Sathis of the Breezy Point residents. "The economy is suffering, the small businesses are really hurting, [and] everybody is fixing up their homes. All you see are construction vehicles. Everybody is working inside their homes. On the exterior you don't see it as much."

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