While Hurricane Sandy brought major flooding and strong winds to Breezy Point, it also fed a massive fire that took out dozens of homes during a blaze that raged for hours. The community is known for its connection to the attacks on September 11, 2001. Breezy Point lost a total of 32 community members and houses many New York City fire fighters who fought on 9/11.
Many residents felt like they evacuated unnecessarily for Hurricane Irene, and decided to remain in Breezy Point as Sandy made landfall. ABC News producers Jim DuBreuil and Keturah Gray rode out the storm in Breezy Point and recalled their experience.
"At least 80 homes were destroyed in the beachfront neighborhood and we got caught in the chaos," DuBreuil and Gray wrote. Massive flooding made it even more challenging for residents to escape and fire fighters to help. The two "20/20" producers ran up to a roof for refuge, but quickly learned they needed to leave the area.
"I think I was the first one that was like, we need an escape plan, but I also didn’t know if I was going to be strong enough to walk through the water," Gray wrote.
DuBreuil added, "Timbers are flying and there’s 80 mph winds coming at you as you’re going through the waves. You’re trying to get through the flood and the fire’s behind you and I just remember looking at you and going 'don’t look back, don’t look back.'"
The cause of the fire is still unknown.