Thursday marks the anniversary of Hurricane Ian’s rampage through Southwest Florida, a relentless force that forever changed the lives of residents in its path.

The destructive storm was the fifth most powerful storm to hit the United States, missing a Category 5 classification by just 7 miles per hour.

Stretching over 50 miles from Fort Myers coastline to Charlotte Harbor, Ian left a trail of utter devastation in its wake. The storm claimed the lives of 152 people, prompting an extraordinary response from search and rescue teams nationwide who tirelessly worked to save those stranded in floodwaters.

Beyond the human toll, Hurricane Ian also left an indelible mark on the region’s economy. Ranking as the third-costliest natural disaster in U.S. history, it inflicted a staggering $115.2 billion in damages.

One year on, Southwest Florida stands as a testament to resilience and community strength. As the region remembers the catastrophic event, efforts continue to rebuild and fortify against future storms.

Copyright 2023 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Join our Newsletter for the latest news right to your inbox