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Kentucky natives take on Hurricane Isaac

By: Tim Johnston Email
By: Tim Johnston Email

NEW ORLEANS, La./LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Preparations were being made days in advance for Isaac's arrival in New Orleans.

"We've had about 72 hours notice, so everyone has been flocking to the stores. It's pretty hard to find non-perishable items. Everyone's of course grabbing peanut butter, tuna, bread, a lot of ice, and of course, libations," answered Brad Minton, a UK graduate and native of London, Ky, via cell phone from Louisiana.

Minton moved from the Bluegrass to "The Big Easy," to reopen the Hyatt Regency after Hurricane Katrina. Now, he said, it's his turn to weather the storm.

"As of yet, this is my first large hurricane. So I'm not too sure what to expect."

Minton said he's seen a heavy presence from both the National Guard and the New Orleans police department. Something he called a welcoming sight. He also explained that so many in the city are confident they can ride out the hurricane because of the increased measures New Orleans has made since the devastation of Katrina. With that, Minton said he and others have chosen to "hunker" down at his house, tonight.

Another rookie in the hurricane is Emily Frederick, from Lexington, who explained by phone that these past few days have been "a waiting game."

Frederick says she just wanted to move to the Gulf Coast for a different experience, leaving her family and friends in Lexington behind. With Hurricane Isaac making landfall, she said those same loved ones have been keeping close tabs on her.

Still, Frederick said she decided to ride out the storm. She said her mother encouraged her to leave, and even offered to buy her a plane ticket yesterday, but Frederick passed. She explained she wasn't too worried since the storm only reached a Category 1 recently, but she described the city as expectant.

"As you're going around town, you can sense the anxiety in the air. Everybody is wondering what's going to happen. You see people boarding up windows."

While Isaac swirls over their heads in New Orleans, 600 miles away in Lexington the impact of the storm can still be felt.

"I think I know more about the storm path than she does," stated Jennifer Frederick, Emily's twin sister, adding that she's likely more nervous than her sister in Louisiana.

"To be honest, I'll probably avoid looking at the news tonight and I'll just pray that she's okay and protected."

So for Jennifer Frederick, the key is to stay distracted, but she keeps waiting for the updates from her twin.

"We've been talking every few hours or so, so I can keep them updated. Sometimes I feel like they're more glued to the weather than I am," chuckled Emily Frederick.

While she and other Kentucky natives, like Minton, decided Isaac wasn't worth running from, they've still got a lot of people waiting and watching to see what the hurricane will do.

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