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Hurricane Katrina: Couple changes vacation plans

HOUSTON — Erik Henne and his girlfriend Heather Turchin were on their way to New York last week with a stop in Houston when, instead of getting back on the plane to their final destination, they decided to stay and help those in need in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Henne, a Central Kitsap High School grad, and Turchin of Sammamish, Wash., both 22 and pre-med students at the University of Washington, had an eight-day vacation planned to the big city. But knowing Turchin’s family members were missing in New Orleans the couple decided to stay in Houston.

“When we heard the Superdome was getting evacuated we didn’t have the heart to go on vacation with family missing,” Turchin said. “New York City will always be there.”

She was actually in New Orleans with her mother for a wedding and were evacuated early Sunday, Aug. 28 as Hurricane Katrina made its way toward New Orleans. They flew back home and days later learned that many family members were unaccounted for.

“My uncle was rescued off the roof of his house,” said Turchin, calling from a cell phone.

As of Friday, she still had two family members missing. Henne and Turchin have since been in Houston helping at the Gloria Day Lutheran Church which has

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