Back in July, the Sun interviewed Air Force Pararescueman Mike Maroney, a Santa Maria native who was sent to New Orleans to help those who were stranded by the flooding caused by Hurricane Katrina, whose 10th anniversary is on Aug. 29, 2015.
Due to the secret nature of his job, Maroney is not one to talk about his missions. But he did about this one. Maroney opens up about the people he rescued in the first week following the hurricane, including a little girl embracing Maroney in an iconic photo that was taken in the middle of rescue operations. He never got her name.
Ten years later, Maroney is still searching for the little girl and hopes for the chance to reunite with her again.
Photos by Mike Maroney, Kaori Funahashi, and David Minsky