NPR logo Donald Bordelon, 53, Dies. Katrina Survivor Heard On NPR

Donald Bordelon, 53, Dies. Katrina Survivor Heard On NPR



Colleen and Donald Bordelon.

Collen and Donald Bordelon outside their home. (Ben Bergman / NPR)



In Hurricane Katrina's aftermath, Donald and Colleen Bordelon became familiar voices to millions of listeners of NPR's Morning Edition.

They were the very open couple from St. Bernard Parish, near New Orleans, with voices that evoked gumbo, bayous and Mardi Gras, who repeatedly shared with ME host Steve Inskeep and NPR's audience their progress in rebuilding their house and lives after the deluge.

It was the same house in which they rode out Katrina, even after the first floor filled with water.

So many people will no doubt feel the same sense of loss I did when I learned this morning that Mr. Bordelon, 53, died of a massive heart attack Tuesday. His funeral was taking place on Friday as I started to write this posting; he was to be buried in his beloved parish.

Donald and Colleen Bordelon represented the thousands of Gulf Coast people whose decision to stay and remake their lives after Katrina struck a chord in many others. We recognized in them the human desire to go on, to persist, after loss, after tragedy.

It's one of the oldest stories in the collective human narrative. But it's one of which we never tire.

Now there's another loss for the Bordelons and their circle — the passing of a husband, father, uncle and friend. We who listened raptly when the Bordelons shared their lives with the NPR audience would like his family and friends to know how saddened we are by their loss. They have our deepest sympathy.

Morning Edition plans a remembrance of Donald Bordelon on Monday.

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