Wrestling with Hurricane Ida

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A high school team of teenagers takes on a Category 4 storm

Amanda Shaw Hurricane Ida Benefit Concert

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – Like the wrestling team from Brother Martin High School, Hurricane Ida slammed into Louisiana.

But the storm inspired the team to take their all-American moves from the practice mat to a new location.

WGNO’s Bill Wood says it’s the house of Joyann Maddox.

Hurricane Ida hit her home in Paradis, Louisiana.

It’s about half an hour south of New Orleans.

Joyann just bought her house.

She’d been renting it for the last couple of years.

Now, it’s hers.

Well, what’s left of it after Hurricane Ida.

That’s why the team of wrestlers from Brother Martin came to her rescue.

The boys from Brother Martin never knew Joyann Maddox, until now.

Somebody who knew one of their parents knew somebody who knows Joyann.

That’s the connection.

The wrestlers have been to her home, not once, but twice.

And now, they’ve got plans to go again.

Wrestler Gabriel Pierre says, “we wanted to be there for her, help her get through the times she’s going through.”

Wrestler Mark Graffagnini has his own recollection of Hurrican Ida.

Mark says, “the trees were getting blown down, roofs off of houses, personally I was freaking out!”

Joyann Maddox offered to pay the wrestlers.

She wanted to give them money.

Wrestler Aiden McLaughlin says, “it’s not about the money, it’s about helping others especially in a time of need.”

To the money, the team said simply, no thank you.

Wrestler Christopher Sulli figures they’ve got the right mascot at Brother Martin High School.

Christopher says, “yea, we’re the Crusaders.”

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