Mexico Beach residents still facing some day-to-day struggles
“The more they clear, the more that's gone and you see how hard people worked for everything they had and now it's gone,” said Josie LaFountain of the First Baptist Church of Mexico Beach.
Mexico Beach is still in full recovery mode and while locals say they're happy to see how far the city has come, they realize there's still a long road ahead of them, and it starts with getting on the road.
Eddie LaFountain, the Pastor for the First Baptist Church of Mexico Beach, said, “What we don't have here in Mexico Beach yet is a gas station. We still have to drive eleven miles away to get a gas station.”
Residents and members of the First Baptist Church of Mexico Beach, Eddie and Josie LaFountain, say fewer housing options is another issue locals are facing as well as the lower morale of some community members.
Josie LaFountain added, “One of my struggles is just the brokenness of the people that are living in the community. It's not just the brokenness from what Hurricane Michael did but the brokenness from what their lives have been and this just added on to it.”
Despite the destruction, locals believe the progress on repairs could help lift their spirits.
Eddie LaFountain said, “There's a lot of roofs on and a lot of houses being built back, there's a lot that's not. In time it'll be built but God's still sending help.”
Out of the old, comes the new.
New opportunities to rebuild, businesses recovering and reopening, and more chances to make new memories.
“I believe God's blessing it and I believe it'll be rebuilt. It won't be the same Mexico Beach but it'll be a new Mexico Beach.”