NewsSarasota, Manatee County


FEMA worker returns home from Puerto Rico to discover storm damage of his own

Posted at 10:36 PM, Aug 31, 2018

NOKOMIS, Fla. — A Sarasota County man helping the people of Puerto Rico recover from Hurricane Maria came home this week to discover storm damage of his own. 

Scott Saunders spent a lot of time and money building his own patio. He took pride in designing every detail. 

"I did a lot of bamboo work, put signs up," said Saunders. 

Only a shell of his vision remains after straight-line winds tore through his outdoor space Monday night. 

All while Saunders was more than 1,200 miles away. 

Related: Powerful winds tear down roofs, carports in Sarasota County

"I'm thankful this is all it is," said Saunders. "I think I can get past this." 

Saunders works for FEMA and has been in Puerto Rico helping victims of Hurricane Maria.  

"There are people that have been through disasters that, they don't get what's left," said Saunders. "I have a lot of my home left. I have an automobile, I have neighbors next to me, I'm not in 6 feet of water."

The man who's spent countless hours helping storm victims across the country is now relying on his friends and neighbors to help in his time of need. 

"I'd like to rebuild the way it was before," said Saunders.