Galloway residents bracing for Hurricane Sandy Monday morning were expecting the worst in certain areas, and recalled memories of storms that devastated the region in 1944 and 1963.
Resident Richard Price recalled the Great Atlantic Hurricane of 1944, and he and Anna Jezycki both remembered Hurricane Dora in 1964.
“In 1944, the whole boardwalk went (in Atlantic City),” Price said. “I was only six years old, but I remember telephone polls floating down Atlantic Avenue right into the bay. That was when the eye of the storm was right over Atlantic City.”
Portions of the boardwalk on the northern end of Atlantic City have already been unofficially reported to have suffered major damage.
“I think this storm is going to be the equivalent of the 1944 storm,” Price said.
He added he expected it to be bad in Atlantic City and the barrier islands, but that he expected Hurricane Sandy wouldn’t have the same impact on Galloway.
“I’m taking it seriously, but I don’t expect to lose trees like we did with the last storm,” Price said, referring to the summer derecho.
Jezycki said the residents in her neighborhood are all keeping an eye on each other, particularly those who are unable to move or have sick relatives.
“There are about a dozen of us who are in constant contact,” Jezycki said. “We taped our windows, we have pots of water all around, the patio is covered, we have oil lamps, the oil, the radio has batteries and we have a generator.”
She added that many residents of Brigantine, which was given mandatory evacuation orders over the weekend, came to stay with family and friends in Galloway. Some residents from Pleasantville have also migrated into the township.
One of her friends sent her children to stay with family outside the township.
“Mostly everyone is set and we’re ready to weather the storm,” Jezycki said. “You never know what the storm will bring.”
Jezycki spoke about the storm of 1964.
“I weathered a bad storm 40 years ago, and that was bad way back then,” Jezycki said. “This sounds like it’s going to be worse. … (In 1964), the windows were shaking. We had old windows back then, we had flooding. Our lawn looked like a pond, but fortunately, the water didn’t get into the house.”
That storm lasted one day. Hurricane Sandy is projected to last for a few days.
“It’s not as slow moving as they’re saying this one is going to be,” Jezycki said. “This one will linger a little longer.”
Jezycki weathered both storms in her house. The storm of 1964 knocked over a number of trees in her front yard, and they still have some very close to their Gail Lane home.
“Nobody is fooling around,” Jezycki said, acknowledging that with the size of the storm, relocating was not an option.
“Where can we go?” she said. “Even if we go to a motel, if the power goes out, it’s going to go out there, too. Everybody’s in the same boat.
“We’ve done everything humanly possible. We’re in God’s hands now.”