Donna Vanzant struggled through flooded streets and downed power lines two days after superstorm Sandy to reach the ravaged marina she owns in Brigantine.
Secret Service agents were combing the area when she finally arrived, and by the time the afternoon was over, she had met President Obama and shared an emotional hug with him.
The following morning, the image of that embrace, top right, appeared on the front page of The Record and was published and broadcast by news outlets around the world.
I was fortunate enough to be in the pool of news photographers who accompanied the president on his tour of the devastation along the Jersey Shore, and among those who got to photograph Vanzant’s presidential encounter.
I returned to Brigantine last week to see how she was doing.
All but one of the boats in her North Point Marina that were pushed as far as three blocks away by the storm surge have now been recovered, but there is much left to do. Vanzant estimates that her business losses will amount to at least $500,000, including the cost of repairing the marina.
Her son Stephen, 26, took a two-week leave from the Navy to come home to help out. He has started a Facebook page called Rebuild North Point Marina to seek contributions.
Vanzant has been moved by the many kindnesses she received from friends, family and customers. She heard from countless people after the photograph of her hug with the president was published, including from strangers as far away as Vietnam who wished her well.
She said she was honored to meet Obama, but she is also frustrated that she has yet to receive help from either her insurance companies or the government. "The president told me I would get immediate help," she said.
"Looking back on it, it wasted a lot of people’s time," she said of the visit.The future of the North Point Marina remains uncertain. "I am just moving minute by minute, because the insurance companies are telling me no, no, no!" she said.
For Sandy's victims, it was a waste of time, but for Obama, his propaganda office and outlets called the Lapdog Media pushed these images to move the fools who vote based on emotions to help him win re-election a week later.
And Obama owed that moment to the Big RINO, Chris "Krispy Kreme" Christie.
Of course, if George W. Bush were President, he'd have been raked over the coals for how FEMA has screwed up getting aid to the people of New Jersey and New York. But the liberals false Messiah gets a free pass.
Of course when Nashville was hit with a devastating flood back in 2010, Obama couldn't have cared less. The media didn't care either.