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CVS Opens In Lower 9th Ward

Officials gathered in the Lower Ninth Ward for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the new CVS store. Festivities featured an unexpected reunion for Mayor Mitch Landrieu.

CVS and city officials gathered on North Claiborne Avenue near Forstall Street to mark the first national retailer to open in the neighborhood since it was battered by Hurricane Katrina.

CVS executive Roger Francis:

“I hope that it acts as a spark to other partners that they come back down here in the Lower Ninth and invest so that we can get the economic engine going," he said.

As the podium remarks concluded, one woman came out of the crowd, saying she had something to say to the mayor.

“I am the lady with the clock, that only had the clock…. Are you really?.... I’m her.”

It was Margie Eggerson Shorty, known as the lady with the clock. She was rescued from her home in the Lower Ninth Ward by then-Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu. He’s repeatedly  told the story about her carrying a clock into the rescue boat. She said she didn’t have anything, but would at least know the time.

The two hadn’t seen each other since that day. Here's part of their reunion:

“I had that clock...I’ve told that story a thousand times…And I saw it in the Times-Picayune…Can I tell you something? …What….  It was really helpful when I was trying to explain to people around the country that what everybody wanted was just to have what they knew….Right…What you did that day, you helped me out a lot….Really?. ..You actually helped me out more than I helped you…Really?”  

She says she hopes the CVS will encourage more stores and restaurants to open in the neighborhood.

Eileen is a news reporter and producer for WWNO. She researches, reports and produces the local daily news items. Eileen relocated to New Orleans in 2008 after working as a writer and producer with the Associated Press in Washington, D.C. for seven years.

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