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Rising from Ruin is an on-going MSNBC.com special report chronicling two coastal Mississippi towns, Bay St. Louis and Waveland, as they rebuild after Hurricane Katrina.

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BAY ST. LOUIS, Miss. -- “I feel good, I feel real good,” says a delighted Jeanette Lynn Lusich.

Sixty-eight days after Katrina stuck, and a day after we reported for a second time on her family's long wait in tents, a 32-foot FEMA trailer was set down on her property on Lower Bay Road.

When we arrived Saturday morning, two contractors were checking the utilities, giving her a tour of her spanking new home, still fresh with the factory odor.

There’s no master bedroom, but a sofa can turn into a double bed for herself and husband Dale, and a separate room with bunks will accommodate sons Dale Jr. and Clint.

Lynn coos with joy at the oven, listens attentively to advice about the gas alarm that detects propane leaks and admires the storage space.

It’s not a house, but after life in a tent the trailer is a luxury for Lynn and family.

Before we can leave so the Lusiches can haul their life into the trailer, she asks if we can take a photo of her and the two contractors -- Paul Cotton and Eric Whitmere -- assigned through FEMA to sign off on the home.

”I’ve been down all week, and this feels so good,” she says.


Eric Whitmire, left, Lynn Lusich and Paul Cotten stand outside Lusich's new FEMA trailer. (Jim Seida / MSNBC.com)

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Way to go FEMA! This lady only had to wait 68 days. Bravo! Then you cap it off by giving her a stupendous 32 foot trailer. That's incredible! You guys really did a "heck of job!" I can't wait to see all the other great "success stories" you wonderful people are going to pull off.

Once again FEMA is slammed (Ms. Leslie) for helping someone. When will people start taking responsibility for themselves instead of waiting for a handout? When did it become the governments job to provide housing, jobs, food, etc??? What has become of us????

When did we start expecting the U.S. government to be our Daddy? Not to downplay the needs of so many, but why do we expect Uncle Sam to have all the answers? Last time I checked, the role of government didn't include wiping everyone's noses. To all the survivors: Don't let being a hurricane victim define who you are. This is not the end. Make it a new beginning. That's the true spirit of America.

When you are barefoot shoes look pretty good, no matter how long it takes to get them. And if they are comfortable, even if they aren't stylish, they are STILL shoes....

Wow! What a lucky family. We had a 31' motor home & sold it because it was too cramped for myself & my husband, and that was only for camping. Gives new meaning to family closeness.

Who says FEMA has to give you a brand new home?!!Who do you think is footing the bill- taxpayers- people who work. If you're a homeowner, act responsibly- buy homeowners' insurance! And if the insurance company won't insure your home, it's time to move to another location!! Wake up people!!

I think that it is a blessing for this woman to have something other than a tent to live in ESPECIALLY IF IT IS ON HER PROPERTY. It may not be the home she had before but at least she still has the land that is hers.

Kudos to the FEMA people...this proves that there is light at the end of the tunnel..God Bless..

Anyone who says FEMA doesnt spend enough obviously has no job and pays no taxes or is so wealthy it doesnt even matter

When it's O.K. to spend trillions of dollars on foreign aid but not be there to help our own citizens, then people need to reflect on not only what it means to be an American, but to be a human being. It's evident many individuals are totally clueless as to the extent of the destruction that ravaged the Gulf Coast. When everything you worked very hard for is suddenly ripped from the face of the Earth, it's hard to understand where to turn to for basic necessities. It's not just a house here or there that was blown down. Entire communities are struggling for survival. I'm glad we have a system that reaches out and helps each other in times of desperation. Shame on selfish, inconsiderate people who can't help those who really need our help. I bet they'd be pushing to be the first in line if a disaster headed their way!

B. Woughter--
Have insurance "deluxe homeowners policy" actually...with hurricane rider on policy...they still won't pay. Lost 1/3 of the roof completely. Ceilings caved in. We were offered a whopping ten thousand dollars. 2500 sq foot home. 5 years old. We cannot even fix the roof with that.

God bless these thousands of folks who has lost everything in their lives. Homes, jobs, possessions and yes even loved ones. Thank God they are receiving some kind of help at all. And to those who would condemn them for their misfortunes may God have mercy on their cold and callous souls.

Why Doesn't Our Insurance Help For Housing... Why?? We pay them enough money yearly???? I don't understand why it is FEMA who has to set up housing ASAP......... INSURANCE CO> SHOULD GET A TRAILER OR HELP SET YOU UP SOME PLACE TO LIVE...........???

When your job, house and everything was washed away in a day and you're still waiting on insurance money 2 months later I'm happy to have a trailer to live in. There are no rentals and few undamaged houses to live in. No one here is looking for a handout they are just looking for a light at the end of this tunnel. Not only are our homes gone but our entire communities.

As a nurse who just came back from helping those in Mississippi, a FEMA trailer is just a small start to what they will need compared to what they have lost. They have nothing and are asking for next to nothing, the people I met were most grateful for what they were receiving. These are Americans who live here in our own country, and we should be doing everything possible to help those here at home. I don't think many realize the extent of the devastation that happened in the Gulf. Just day to day living is difficult. Shame on you who can't reach out and help or offer understanding. Be glad your not in their place.

68 days to get housing in a disaster stricken area really isn't that bad, considering the mountains of government red tape that usually goes along with requisitioning a box of paper clips. A 32 ft trailer isn't the best of accomodations, but it's a roof and a place to live; they can only build from there. I know I'd be forever grateful if it were me in that situation. We all can only hope that relief comes quickly to all that survived and as community partners, the acts of giving don't diminish so we can help others as we'd want others to help us.

Seeing ones get blessed like this is a wonderful, yet, I'm at a loss here. What took so long!? Why do people like this, yes, with children too in our OWN! country, have to WAIT!! so long. How is it that we can send billons of U.S. dollars to our neighboring countries in a blink of an eye, while our own country can't send a much needed trailer in the same time frame? 68 DAYS!!!??? I say,'shame on this government'.

I am very pleased she received a trailer to live in. I commend her for her patience. I just hope that my daughter and grand daughter will be able to afford it.

We pay insurance premiums, but they insurance companies won't no risks. Shame on them. The government could spend its money helping in other ways, other than housing, if the insurance companies did what they should be doing. Then, the government could help those that truly cannot afford insurance, etc. At the same time, we all need to do our part in helping ourselves. There should balance in all of this.

I've grown increasingly tired of the people out there that think the folks on the coast are just lounging around waiting for their "daddy" to "wipe their noses" and "wake up" in time for their "handouts". I did'nt realize that you all were the ONLY people paying taxes in this country, therefore I'd like to make a few points crystal clear to those who have this assumption about us down here..... (1)THESE PEOPLE PAY TAXES TOO! (2) Fema is not "giving" these trailers away...the people who are receiving the trailers are only USING them for up to 18 months, so don't fret...they are not getting to keep the trailers. (3) All the insurance premiums that these people have been paying for the last 5, 10, 15 or 20 years has pretty much been "stolen" from them as the insurance companies are NOT paying a tenth of what is damaged AND a few of the insurance companies are NOT going to renew the policies. (4) The value of production loses in the state of Mississippi alone are as follows: Cotton - $89,200,000.00 Rice - $19,075,000.00 Soybeans - $18,000,000.00 Corn - $17,400,000.00 Forestry - $200,000,000.00 Poultry - $30,000,000.00 Beef - $70,000,000.00 and damage to the states oyster beds and shrimp fisheries are SEVERE. So what does that mean for all you good taxpaying people that don't think this state provides enough to warrent help from the federal government????? That means that next Whopper just got more expensive and the Sunday dinner just went up with the higher cost of chicken in the grocery store and let's not forget that new deck that you were hoping for in the spring just rose in cost by up to 20% because lumber is going up. Not to mention you'll have a harder time getting that shrimp cocktell at brunch because the shrimping business is virtually non existant at this time. All I can say is that those of you who have these opinions need to stop looking down the end of you noeses when you make these "revelations" and stop to think how would you handle the same situation if you were stuck in it.

And why shouldn't people who have paid taxes for years not be taken care of by their government. I'd rather see helping them out rather than providing subsidies to the oil companies.

Seems some of those posting here have no concept of the scale of the disaster. Picture 55 MILES of homes, three blocks deep... wiped to the slab. And that is just the Mississippi coast! The estimate is that over 60,000 homes were completely destroyed in 8 hours that day.... not counting the flood days later in New Orleans. I'm here. I've seen it. Maybe a bit more charity is called for on the part of those trying to make political points.

Lynn, you look great! I'm so happy for you. I've been concerned for you, especially now that the weather is changing. Things are going to start getting better for you now that you're out of that tent.

They are doing the best they can considering all the red tape and all. What bothers me the most is that the International community expects us to always bail them out with natural disasters, but with ours there were maybe a hanful of countries that offered help. Keep our money for our disasters and then let some of these other countries see how much we really do give. I feel really bad for the people in MS cause they got hit really hard, and almost all news coverage is on New Orleans. More than New Orleans was devastated and more than New Orleans should be getting help and news about them. My wife was stationed in Biloxi for Katrina with the Air Force, and I couldnt believe the devastation I seen when I went to get her 2 days afterwards. Hopefully they can recover, but it is going to take a very long time. I also think the insurance companies are alot more liable than they are letting on. I just got my insurance check for my car on Saturday. Only took them two months. That is a small amount paid out and I sincerely hope that you homeowners that are being run around by your insurance companies can get your money to help rebuild your homes and lives. Good Luck to all of you on the Coast

We are well educated, have plenty of insurance, our families and jobs are here. Your insurance is only as good as your adjustor...mine has quit 3 times, and we still haven't settled on our damages. My brother in law is disabled with a small child and still has no place to live. We will not leave our responsibilities, but we do pay taxes and insurance, contribute to our community and thanks to churches and friends we will make it. I can't think of a better place to live!

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