4

You Can't Go Home Again

Dallas' Connie Tipado, who took in dozens of Katrina evacuees
^
Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

Local filmmaker Ginny Martin spent the past two years exploring the impact of Hurricane Katrina through the lens of one African-American family. She followed them as they tried to find their way after losing their homes and community when the storm destroyed St. Bernard Parish, where their forebears had lived since before the Civil War.

The result debuts on KERA-Channel 13 tonight at 8: Still Waiting: Life After Katrina is a profound portrait of loss, Creole culture and the unifying spirit of family. At the center of the film is Connie Tipado, who helped some 150 New Orleans relatives after the storm and at one point had 48 of them living in her Dallas home. "They thought they were coming for one or two days," she says. "It didn't happen like that."

Within a year, most of the family returned to Louisiana to make do in a neighborhood that still looked like a disaster zone and lacked basic infrastructure and services. Living in FEMA trailers, with few black-owned businesses to employ them or familiar churches to soothe them, some wondered if going home was a futile attempt to recapture a past that will never exist again. Colorful, real and heartbreaking, the film captures a sense of home and community rarely experienced in the United States, and chronicles a historic culture as it struggles to preserve itself.

"Connie and her family's story says a lot about our own humanity," Martin, a two-time Emmy Award-winning documentary director, says in a media release. "Ultimately, the film is not just about one storm, one place, one family -- but about how we see each other and how we are there for each other -- or not -- and how we survive, especially in a time of crisis." --Megan Feldman

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.