SARASOTA COUNTY (WFLA) – Hurricane Ian left widespread damage across Sarasota County, the worst of it being in the southernmost parts.
According to the sheriff’s office, at least two people died as a result of the storm.
In Nokomis, residents who evacuated returned home to a mess Thursday. There were downed trees on houses, cars, and blocking streets.
Debbie Myers’ home survived the storm unscathed, but her yard suffered significant damage.
“This is where I spend every afternoon, in my backyard, and I will again,” Myers said. “I am just thankful that nobody lost a life. We are all safe. My kids are first responders, and I’m so blessed that they made it home today. They gave them eight hours, and they are headed back to work. I pray for all those first responders and policemen and nurses and doctors because they didn’t have a choice last night. They stuck it out.”
Multiple residents said they’re also thinking of the southwest Florida community, devastated by the storm in Ft. Myers and Naples.
“I can’t imagine what they’re going through down there,” Myers said. “A lot of my friends went down there to be safe and so I don’t know how they’re doing. We don’t have the cell signal, so I’m praying for all my friends that went down there are okay.”
Aside from losing power, many residents in southern Sarasota County are dealing with limited cell phone reception and shuttered gas stations.