From the Bayou State to Bearkat Country

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For the first time, there are arrivals from the Superdome in our area. Evacuees stories from the scene are now being heard first-hand.

Some are angry about how things were handled there. Many are relieved to be far away from the dome. And all are being cared for by First Baptist Church.

Some 350 evacuees arrived in Huntsville around 1 AM Friday morning. They were greeted with bed and blankets, and by medical personnel ready to help with any urgent care needs. There were also authorities from Walker County and Huntsville who confiscated alcohol and weapons from some of the evacuees.

Once the ex-Superdome settlers settled down, officials say things have been as calm, cool and collected as could be expected. People housed there are thankful for what Huntsville volunteers have been able to provide.

Still, the chaos they faced for days still lingers on their minds.

"We're alright, but the ones that are still in New Orleans are the ones still going through hell plus hell," said one evacuee. "Hell plus hell. There's nothing but hell. We're trying to get all our family and friends back together."

Another compared his experience at the dome to that of a warzone. "There was such confusion," he said. "To me, it was like the last days of Vietnam, total confusion and chaos. You run up there to the gate, you go in, you sneak in, and the plane's out. And that's how it was [in New Orleans]. They thought the bus would be the last bus and would never get on there again."

But despite missing family members and friends, they're still thankful for what they've got now.

"Oh, they're good," said Linda Snead of the people of Huntsville. She who still has not heard about her mother or infant son.

"They're good people. This is a home, but it's not home without your family. But they're like a family now because they treat us as good."