First responder Sgt. Chuck Ervin reflects on Sandy anniversary

Sandy Recovery, 1 Year Later: First Responders

Sandy Recovery, 1 Year Later: First Responders (10/29/13)

UNION BEACH - Many of the first responders on the front lines during and after the storm are sharing their story one year after Sandy struck.

The work took an emotional toll on the many workers who responded to last year’s Superstorm.

For Sgt. Chuck Ervin, a 25-year Union Beach police veteran, it was an unforgettable experience. In Union Beach, 90 percent of the homes were damaged or destroyed.

"It was surreal, unreal," Ervin says. "You know that you have to do something but you are not sure what you are supposed to do. And you are waiting to wake up. You are waiting for it to be a dream. But it is not."

"You do not think about your family during it until they call you," Ervin says. "You are busy helping everybody else."

While many in Union Beach are repairing and rebuilding, Ervin’s says reliving the ordeal is also a struggle.

"There is nothing good about it. I do not want to celebrate it. I want to get to the day where I do not remember it happened," Ervin says.

Sgt. Ervin says one of the most difficult jobs for first responders who converged on Union Beach was rescuing trapped residents in the hours after Sandy hit.

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