NEW CANAAN - More than 250,000 people fled New Orleans as Hurricane Katrina blasted the Gulf Coast 10 years ago Saturday, and some of them now call southwestern Connecticut home.
Peter Freiberg has lived in New Canaan since the storm. He says the hurricane turned his hometown into a ghost town.
He says that growing up, his family never left during hurricanes -- until Katrina.
"If my mother was saying we needed to leave, we all needed to leave very quickly," Freiberg says.
He stayed with family in Connecticut for six weeks as his home city slipped into chaos. When he finally returned, he says the scene was saddening.
"No traffic, no people, it was a ghost town," Freiberg says. "One of our neighbors was sitting on his porch with a handgun tucked into his belt and a shotgun on his chair next to him."
But now, 10 years later, his kids are almost off to college. He says once they leave, he and his wife hope to head home.
He says that while his new home is "wonderful," he wants to go back to the Big Easy.
"It has a tremendous amount of charm, and we miss that," Freiberg says.
After Katrina hit, hundreds of volunteers from southwestern Connecticut rushed to New Orleans to help. One of them will share his memories with News 12 tomorrow.