Time-Picayune: Mayor Landrieu to residents still displaced by Katrina: ‘We love you’

Mayor Mitch Landrieu kicked off a week of events to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina Friday afternoon (Aug. 21) with a forum on storm preparedness gathering executives from Wal-Mart Stores Inc. as well as government, non-profit and other business leaders.

Landrieu thanked the nation for an outpouring of help — both financial and through thousands of volunteer hours — for New Orleans immediately after the storm through today.

“This is prime evidence that not only has the world not forgotten us, but they love us,” Landrieu said.

Landrieu, joined by Dan Bartlett, executive vice president of corporate affairs for Wal-Mart Stores, outlined a full line-up of events leading up to the Aug. 29 anniversary of Katrina.

Planned events include a Citywide Day of Service on Aug. 29 hosted by the city and Wal-Mart Stores. Volunteers will participate in nearly 100 service projects across the city.

Landrieu said has about 6,000 volunteers signed up for the day of service. The city is looking for about 4,000 more, he said.

In addition to thanking the American public for its generosity after the storm, Landrieu had a message for former New Orleans residents who still have not returned to the city. The mayor recently returned from trips to Atlanta and Houston where he met with residents displaced by the storm.

“I let them know we love them, that the city of New Orleans will always welcome them back and that should they choose not to come back the only thing they can’t do is not root for the Saints,” Landrieu said, flashing a grin.

Watch¬†video of Landrieu’s full comments above.