Disaster points to our region's needs

The images of the devastation of Hurricane Katrina are jolting. The worst natural disaster to strike our country in a century has left almost 1,000,000 homeless, left thousands dead and caused an estimated $125 billion in damages. It will be decades before these wounds heal. Our hearts and prayers go out to all the families impacted by this tragic disaster.

We'd like to express our deepest respect for the individuals engaged in the relief efforts on the scene who are making extraordinary efforts, in extraordinary circumstances, to deliver comfort, restore order and provide for the basic needs of the survivors. These examples of ordinary people making heroic efforts are the best examples of American values known across the world. It is who we are when we are at our best.

Please consider contributing to the Hurricane Katrina relief effort. Your contribution will make a difference. We suggest the American Red Cross (1-800-435-7669 or www.redcross.org).

Hurricane Katrina is a reminder that Puget Sound is susceptible to violent natural catastrophes. Whether it's an earthquake or volcanic eruption, the everyday lifestyle we can take for granted can be suddenly stripped from us. Please take the time to develop a family emergency plan and get involved with a community emergency-action group. Washington State has one of the best emergency preparedness operations in the country, but that will be no substitute for individual action if a disaster of such magnitude should strike us.

Please get involved with our community efforts to help show the world when we are at our best.

Rep. Glenn Anderson

Rep. Jay Rodne

5th District

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