About a thousand photos turned up in the streets when Sandy's flood waters cleared on Staten Island. Now there is a push to reunite them with their owners.
Baby pictures, wedding pictures, old family Christmas cards and so much more are among the found items, all collected by volunteers during a cleanup of New Dorp Beach, Staten Island, in the days and weeks after Hurricane Sandy. Many of them were scarred with signs of the storm.
Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis has been holding onto them now for almost a year.
"Obviously we had so many more priorities in the beginning days, following the storm and still to this day we're trying to work on getting people back in their homes, but still, some people get very happy and very emotional when they see a photograph of a family member that they had lost," Malliotakis said.
There are about 1000 photos here and there are hundreds more that still need to be cleaned up that have been recovered in a nearby neighborhood. Now the assemblywoman is working to put them all up on Facebook so they can be returned to their rightful owners.
Kelly Griswold is one of about 15 people who have already found photos through the Facebook page. They belonged to her parents, who lost everything in the storm. In fact, a mailbox is all that's left where the cedar grove avenue house once stood.
"As soon as I started going through the pictures on the website the tears started coming back, full force, it was just... you got a little piece back," she said.
So far she has found about 100 pictures on the site. These were images she never imagined she'd see again.
"It's not hot and cold running water, it's not indoor plumbing, it's not a couch in the living room to sit on, but you can look back at those photos and get a warm and fuzzy feeling, like I remember that, that was a good time, and it kind of helps ease, or I guess quell the pain of Sandy," she said.