After a tornado ran through New Orleans East communities on Feb. 7, 69-year-old Darlene Dalferes went to scope out the damage in her neighborhood. Dalferes visited elderly neighbor, Pamela Jones home at 2 p.m. located on Citrus Drive. Once Dalferes arrived, she saw Jone’s car, which meant she was home for the tornado, and a completely destroyed home. However, Jones was nowhere in sight.
Quan Bailey,18-year- old and his father, housed elderly people on his street, after the tornado touched down. The wind caused lights to go out and broke pipes that leaked gas into the air. “You could smell gas throughout the neighborhood,” Bailey said. The neighborhood had several elderly members who needed shelter, so Bailey made it his mission to make sure they were safe.
“My dad turned off our gas line because Entergy was taking too long,” Bailey said, “and we put all of the old people in my house.” One of those elderly neighbors moved to safety was Pamela Jones.
Bailey found Jones, with her son Arsenio Jones, lying on the couch with a board covering both of them. Bailey said, “I helped get the board off, and helped them get out of the house safely.”
Bailey also saved 13-year-old Zanae Austin and her grandmother, who were stuck in their home.Immediately after the tornado, Austin said that they were the first people Bailey rescued. “We were the first ones who came to mind because he knew my grandma was usually in the house by herself,” Austin said.
Now, the question for most members of the New Orleans East community, is to rebuild or leave. For four nights, Austin and her family stayed at the Lamont hotel in downtown New Orleans. Austin said they took the belongings they needed and locked up the house. Now, they are looking for a new home.
“My mom said if she finds a house in the East, we will stay, but if she does not find one, we are moving to Slidell.”
At the end of the day, Austin is just happy that she and her grandmother. She was grateful for Bailey’s heroic actions.
“I am no hero,”
“I just did what I had to do.”