EAST HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) -- Exactly one year ago today, a stormy mass of clouds in the Atlantic got a name: Tropical Storm Irene.
Eventually making its way to Connecticut, the storm devastated some shoreline communities and for those who lost their homes, the memories from a year ago are still raw.
One year ago, the Long Island Sound in East Haven looked very much the same as it does right now: calm, peaceful, and serene. One year ago, far away from the placid scene, a storm formed that would create havoc along the shoreline.
It ravaged Richard Shiffrin's boyhood cottage on Cosey Beach. One year later, a memory has been replaced by a postcard-perfect, new, shoreline home.
"I said if I'm going to do this, I'm going to do it right, and invest the money and build something that would be, not only comfortable for me, for the rest of my family," said Shiffrin.
Several homes along Cosey Beach were either destroyed or severely damaged.
Some are being repaired, some replaced, and some that are still showing signs of being worn and wounded are up for sale.
"I hope the street becomes a place that everyone enjoys living on," said Shiffrin, "and that properties are maintained, it's to all our benefit."
"There was water over the road, most people got water in their basements," Lou Colangelo said.
Colangelo has vivid memories of Irene and her visit to Stratford's Shoreline Drive. While the damage in Stratford was not nearly as violent as East Haven, it took days to get life back to normal.
"There was about three or four feet of sand in the road," said Colangelo.
One year ago, some acted passively upon learning that a storm formed miles from their tranquil setting. One long year later, lives and homes have been rebuilt, but the love of the sea remains.
"Who wouldn't want to stay here," said Colangelo. "I feel like charging the workers when they're having their lunch out here, looking at the water."
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