The Digital Journalist
© Ted Jackson/The New Orleans Times Picayune
X MARKS THE SPOT By the time searchers spotted the open hole in this rooftop, this street had grown quiet. We jumped from the boat onto the rooftop and scampered to the opening and peered in. It was still the first day of flooding in Lakeview. The old man had laid down on the rafters in the attic, crossed his hands across his chest and died in the intense heat. His crippled sister had drowned in her wheelchair below. It was my first dead body of the flood. It certainly wouldn't be my last. The team spray-painted a florescent orange X, the code for a searched house. At the top of the X was the date. To the left was scribed the abbreviation for the rescue team. Below was simply "1DB": "One Dead Body," a crude epitaph indeed.