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Katrina Evacuee Says Goodbye To Colorado, Returns Home

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Donald Seals returns to New Orleans after making Denver his home for 5 years. (credit: CBS)

Donald Seals returns to New Orleans after making Denver his home for 5 years. (credit: CBS)

DENVER (CBS4)- Five years after Hurricane Katrina, one man said it’s time to leave Colorado and return to New Orleans. Donald Seals has been wanting to return home for some time, but needed a little help to get there.

“Denver has been my safekeeper,” said Seals.

He came to the Mile High City with just the clothes on his back.

Once again, the generosity of Coloradans is helping him build a home. A moving truck filled with all of his possessions, most of them donated after he made his way to Adams County after Katrina, waits outside an empty house.

It was going to cost Seals $6,000 to move, an expense he couldn’t fit into his budget. Instead, the Volunteers of America put on a fundraiser and raised enough money for the moving truck.

“The people of Denver have been phenomenal,” said Seals.

Andrew Hudson, a Denver businessman, is among those helping Seals get home. Hudson and a group of friends went to Houston, Texas five years ago to find Katrina victims who wanted to make a fresh start in Denver.

“He asked a lot of questions. He wanted to make sure he was making the right decision,” said Hudson.

The death of Seals’ sister has once again changed the direction of his life.

“It made me realize more than ever that it was time to go home,” said Seals. “Home is where the heart is. And I have to go back. I have to.”

“Denver has been my home for me for 5 years and I couldn’t have had a better place to end up,” said Seals.

Seals leaves town Thursday afternoon. When he returns to New Orleans, the Louisiana Recovery Association is making it possible for him to purchase a home.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Andrew Hudson was a former Senate candidate. Hudson oversees a careers website called AndrewHudsonsJobsList.com.

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