Scenes From a Devastated Block on Staten Island

Photo: Lindsay Kassof

On Sunday, Daily Intel headed to the Miller Field distribution center on Staten Island, along with rerouted marathon runners, FEMA, the Red Cross, the Army National Guard, 15-year-old ROTC members from the Bronx, green-vested members of the World Mission Society Church of God, Occupy Sandy recruits from Park Slope, and thousands of Staten Island residents, both offering and seeking help. The outpouring of generosity was overwhelming, but the complete wreckage all along Staten Island’s southeastern coast in adjoining neighborhoods Great Kills, Oakwood, New Dorp Beach, Midland Beach, Dongan Hills, and South Beach was far more shocking.

The houses in many of those neighborhoods were built as beach bungalows and crumpled when hit by a thirteen-foot wall of water. “It broke the front door, the storm door, right off the thing, and then it took the whole back wall out. The bottom of the house — washing machine, dryer — was midway down the block,” said Helen Wasson, an elderly resident of Cedar Grove Avenue in New Dorp Beach. These photographs represent the scene on a single block, on a single afternoon, a full week after the storm. There’s still much more work to be done.