Mitchell Reports | November 02, 2012
>> meanwhile in staten island desperation is mounting. people are struggling to contemplate the destruction of their homes and lives as ann curry discovered firsthand in her reporting for "rock center" last night.
>> so many more [ inaudible ].
>> my mom az a simple lady.
>> did you have many copies of this?
>> this is the only photograph.
>> only wedding photograph of my mom.
>> finding all these photographs.
>> they mean the world to me. my pictures mean the world to me.
>> most of phyllis and her husband's world is gone.
>> this is our whole life is here. how do we start over? took 30 years to get our home and now he retired and -- where do we go? how do we start to build a life over again?
>> and, of course, she and so many other families on staten island come from the fire fighting community and the police community, the death toll on staten wnbc's mark san tia joins us from there. mark, you're in a home there on staten island . tell me what you're seeing on the ground and how people are coping and whether fema is finally arriving on the scene today.
>> yeah. fema is here. fema is here, federal agents set up in a command center . this is ocean breeze , sort of a forgotten community in between. south beach and midland beach the waters receded, debris cleared. i want to give you a tour. this was a home of ten, eight children, mom and dad called this home. this was the living room . you can see the signs of family. a doll, winnie the pooh , walk you down the hall where this used to be a closet, there was a bathroom here. now covered in sea water and mud and muck and the stench here is incredible. jackie, want to talk to you real quick. your nieces and nephews, 9 through 21 live here. folks here need help. are you getting the help?
>> nobody is here. nobody. they just showed up after you showed up. that's it. it's terrible. look. nothing.
>> this used to be the backyard. there used to be a patio there. now it's someone else 's trampoline, construction equipment, tires, everything that washed up from the water here. several houses in ocean breeze have been condemned. others that i've walked through, the floor, is starting to give. everything soggy. i don't understand, we don't know how folks here can rebuild. a lot of people have said it's not about rebuilding the homes, it's about rebuilding lives. if this isn't something that just happy father's day daddy, this again was a house of ten, eight children called this home. now those eight children have to look for a new place to live with their mom and dad and regroup. jackie, if someone is watching, what is vital to ocean breeze ? what do people need most?
>> a place to live. there's no place to go. nobody's had helping us. no food, no place to live. they got to start school monday. how? they don't have clean clothes. nothing here to help us.
>> what we've heard, people here are -- they don't know if it's toxic, dealing with toxins. they're asking for gloves, so they can clean up their own homes. gloves to clean up. asking for some supplies, some cleaning supplies. get out of the way, folks coming in and out of here cleaning things. this is -- this is what it looks like. so many of us have seen pictures what the outside looks like. that's why i wanted to bring you inside to see what families here are dealing with. little girl 's room just down the hall. i don't know if we have time to show you, but we would like to show you because this story is not unique. people up and down these blocks here, midland beach , south beach , over in new door beach. this was -- you see a bedroom over here. the water came in here, there is -- the water line is at the top of the ceiling. moved dressers, had heavy dressers around, where the little girls used to spend the nights. this is their bedroom. this drives home the devastation. balloons and posters. this is every little girl 's room. now destroyed by the water. and there are -- little tie dye kits and their lives disrupting, not just disrupted but devastated. they're reaching out for help, asking for help, we're live in ocean breeze , staten island , i'm mark, back to you.
>> mark, thank you so much for your reporting. and we'll be right back. we put