It’s hard to believe it’s been a full ten years since the devastating Hurricane Katrina hit the southern United States.
Few places were hit harder than New Orleans, and the New Orleans Saints have proved to be a healing tool for much of the city over the last ten years culminating with their Super Bowl championship in 2009. On the ten-year anniversary of the hurricane on Sunday, the team released a short video on Twitter featuring coaches and players thanking the city mixed in with footage of some of the Saints more notable moments over the last decade including their Super Bowl win and their first home game after Katrina.
Even if you’re not a Saints fan and/or don’t live in the area, the video will give you chills. Say what you will about the Saints organization, but they were undeniably a catalyst in the recovery efforts of the city. As CNBC contributor Carol Roth noted “The Saints became a rallying point for the area…From restaurants and bars that host fans before, during and after the games, to nearby neighbors charging for parking … small businesses in particular are real beneficiaries from having a NFL team in their hometown.”
In addition to helping out the city’s economy, the Saints helped the city find a rallying point. As local business owner Gina Wildmon told CNBC: “When the Saints returned, we got a huge shot in the arm.”
It may be many more years before New Orleans is fully recovered, but the fact that they were able to host the Super Bowl in 2013, just eight years after the devastation, speaks volumes. The Saints window of opportunity for another championship with Drew Brees and Sean Payton at the helm is probably closing (or closed), but the ’06 and ’09 teams especially played a special role in the city’s renaissance.