HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The former president of The University of Southern Mississippi is remembering the impact of Hurricane Katrina on USM, as the 10th anniversary of that storm approaches.
Shelby Thames, who led the university from 2002-07, said it was the hard work of hundreds of dedicated employees that helped both the Hattiesburg and Gulf Coast campuses recover from the hurricane that struck on Aug. 29, 2005.
Thames' recollections will be part of WDAM-TV's half-hour special, "Katrina Untold: 10 Years Later," which will air Friday Aug. 28 at 6:30 p.m., on both NBC and ABC channels.
"We were back in operation on the Gulf Coast in three weeks, we were teaching classes again in Hattiesburg in two weeks," Thames said. "And you think about the commitment that our people made to make that happen, it's just phenomenal."
Southern Miss will officially mark its recovery from Hurricane Katrina next week, with events in Hattiesburg on Aug. 26 and Long Beach on Aug. 28.
Former Gov. Haley Barbour, who led the state during recovery efforts, will speak at both occasions.