Former residents hit hard in N.Y.

Published 4:26 pm Wednesday, October 31, 2012


FRANKLIN— For former Southampton County resident Rebecca Mosena, the devastation in New York City left by Hurricane Sandy seemed so unreal.

“I’ve lived here almost four years, and of course I’ve never seen anything like this,” Mosena said Tuesday. “But I have a neighbor that has lived here for 60 years, and he has never ever seen the subway system shut down.”

The hurricane on Monday pounded the Northeast, killing at least 39 and leaving more than 8.1 million homes and businesses without power in 17 states; nearly half were in New York and New Jersey.

“My daughter and her husband have no electricity, and their cellphones are out,” said Betsy Neale, wife of Southampton Academy headmaster Mercer Neale. “Fortunately they did have a house phone, which is how we were able to get in contact with them.”

Neale’s daughter, Brent Winston, 32, was trapped overnight with her husband in their West Village apartment building due to floodwaters.

“They are fine, but I think they were pretty scared,” she said. “They were stranded. Their street was flooded. They couldn’t get their car out of the parking garage.”

The couple evacuated Tuesday morning after floodwaters receded, Neale said.

“I think this is a devastation that no one in the New York area has ever experienced,” she said.

Mosena, 21, is in her fourth year studying at Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City’s East Village.

“She is doing fine,” said her father, Richard Mosena. “New Yorkers are resilient folks. I just saw a news report that showed 300 taxi cabs underwater, and they have the subway and Amtrak shutdown.”

Mosena lives in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn.

“Where we are we didn’t get hit as hard as we thought we would,” she said. “We were pretty lucky; it blew over before we knew it.”

Mosena and her friends stayed in contact with family and other friends through text messages while they sought shelter in the back portion of their building during the storm.

Yvette Brozzo of Branchville said Tuesday morning she spoke to her 18-year-old son, James who lives north of Syracuse, on Monday night. “When I last spoke to him, he was bracing for the storm; he was getting a lot of heavy wind and rain,” Brozzo said.

“The storm wasn’t that bad up here, but there were a lot of heavy winds and rain,” James Brozzo said. “We still are having high winds. The power flickered a few times but it never went out.”