VIDEO: With or Without FEMA, Staten Island Sifts Through the Rubble

FEMA finally arrives in Staten Island to assess damage, and finds a community already banding together.

One of the first confirmed victims of Hurricane Sandy was Angela Dresch, 13, who was drowned Monday night by a massive storm surge that swept through her home just behind the beach in Tottenville, Staten Island. All told, Staten Island saw more deaths than any other borough, and took some of the storm’s worst beatings. With decimated houses and a rising body count, residents here say they felt ignored by FEMA and the Red Cross, despite desperately wanting and needing their help.

By Friday morning, FEMA officials were in Tottenville, helping residents apply for disaster compensation. But they were already behind the Tottenville community itself, which had rolled out hoardes of volunteers armed with shovels and wheelbarrows (and a boatload of donuts) to help those who lost their homes sort through the rubble.

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