Ten years ago, Hurricane Katrina ravaged the Gulf Coast of Louisiana and Mississippi. It destroyed just about everything on the beaches of Gulfport and Biloxi, while the levees breaking waterlogged the city of New Orleans. The New Orleans Saints were forced out of the city for nearly the entire 2005 season, but one legendary looked back on the aftermath of the storm.
Bleacher Report shared an incredible letter that former Saints’ wide receiver Joe Horn penned talking about how he just wanted to see the team return to the city. He didn’t care if he ever played another down for the team, which happened following the 2006 season. He was a public face that wanted to see he city get rebuilt after the worst storm in the United States since Hurricane Andrew in the mid 90’s.
Horn talked about getting news of the impending storm:
“In our last preseason game before the 2005 season we headed to Oakland to play the Raiders on September 1. We were scheduled to fly out on that Friday but learned Hurricane Katrina was touching ground that Thursday. I was on the golf course when I got a call from my coach, who was Jim Haslett at the time. He said to pack clothes and get my family outta Dodge. In times like these, there was nothing else to say. The organization paid us as players, so we did what the organization told us to do.
“Katrina hit while we were still in California, and we saw the incredible images on TV. The actual storm was nothing compared to the flood damage caused after the levees broke. When those four levees were breached, people were like “Whoa, we’re stuck here now!” It was crazy being in California, seeing that s–t and feeling helpless. Forget a football game. I ain’t playing that s–t. I was trying to get back to the city and give my life if I had to.”
He recalled his memories of the fans telling him that the team had to keep winning. He was shocked. Horn was never a part of the 2009 Super Bowl winning Saints team, but he didn’t mind that. He knew that getting and keeping the team in New Orleans was his main goal.
Horn will always be known as one of the greatest players in Saints’ history. His legacy with the city will always be the most important thing he is remembered for.
You can read the full letter here.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports