Hurricane Michael takes toll on survivors' health 6 months after storm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Six months after Hurricane Michael, residents and businesses in the Panhandle still have a long road to recovery.

Residents said the storm has taken a toll on their health because of the stress.

“We’ve been married thirty years, we’ve never experienced this,” Tresa Estes said. “We’ve always had a home.”

Estes and her family have been living in a tent after the Category 4 storm destroyed their home. Estes said the hardest part of the last six months is the impact it’s had on her son, who has autism.

“I thought I was going to lose him,” Estes said. “What it’s done to my youngest, that’s the main thing right there.”

Since the storm hit, Estes said she’s had three stress-related heart attacks.

“I am the one that’s supposed to fix everything and you can’t fix something if you’re in the hospital,” Estes said. “My son had to go through seeing his mom in the hospital. He thought he was fixing to lose his mom.”

Now focused on her health and family's future, Estes said she is taking it one day at a time half a year after her life was turned upside down by Hurricane Michael.

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