Sanibel Island woman filmed her 'goodbyes' during Ian

Sanibel Island woman filmed her 'goodbyes' during Ian

(NewsNation) —Hurricane Ian storming through Florida, leaving destruction behind it. Now, safe from Sanibel Island share emotional stories about survival.

Starting Wednesday, search and rescue crew had brought nearly 2,000 people to safety and out of danger following Ian.

And while the community is start rebuildingmany will have lasting emotional challenges.

Sanibel Island survivors have shared their survival stories with NewsNation, showing their struggles to stay alive during and after the storm as they wait for rescue crews to evacuate them. A woman, stranded on the island, thought she was going to die and began recording her final goodbye.

“You’re not going to believe this,” Jennifer O’Neill says in a self-recorded video showing Ian’s catastrophic wind and rain.

O’Neill was stranded on the second floor of his home on Sanibel Island. He was recording the hurricane’s devastation when he realized it was going to be worse than he had previously thought.

“I made the video because I didn’t know if the next morning they would find my body,” O’Neill told NewsNation. “And I wish I could send a message to my parents and tell them I love them and the people I care about.”

As the storm grew stronger, O’Neill’s emotions took over him. He recorded himself saying goodbye to his family and friends.

“I love you, mom and dad. I love you,” she shouted, “Thank you for everything you’ve ever done.”

He told NewsNation it was like goodbye to the island and everything.

O’Neill is eventually rescued from the island by his best friend Judd, whose boat survived the storm, but he says his mind will be stuck there for a while.

“It’s a struggle. Basically, we just put one foot in front of the other and try to help as many people as possible. And you know, you’re emotional so it’s hard,” she admits.

More families are trying to return to barrier islands so they can assess the damage done to their property, but this is very difficult as many ships were damaged by the storm.

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