A pilot and reporter who has risked her life on the battlefield has taken on a new target-the human suffering experienced during Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath.
Author Cholene Espinoza's response to what she saw on a trip to Mississippi after the storm-and what she learned about herself-forms the basis for a book dedicated to rebuilding what Katrina washed away.
The book, "Through The Eye Of The Storm" (Chelsea Green, $14.00), is described as a rallying cry for working Americans who survived the storm and an indictment of the public and commercial sources of assistance that failed them.
Espinoza details what she calls the seemingly insurmountable red tape and what she describes as barriers to assistance for people "who have no means to complain or demand better." She sees her book as a story of loss and recovery, of the ravages of disaster and the healing power of community.
Noted journalist Helen Thomas describes the book as "the inspiring spiritual journey of a courageous woman who is dedicated to great human causes."
Said Thomas, "We can all learn from Cholene Espinoza."
Proceeds from the book will help to build and support a community/education center that will serve the Katrina survivors of Harrison County on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. It will provide young adults with GED, computer and other job training that will provide them with the skill to participate in the recovery of their community. Is will also serve the community as an after-school facility. It's hoped the center will eventually provide health care services.
Currently a United Airlines pilot, Espinoza graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1987. In 1992 she became the second woman selected to fly the U-2 reconnaissance aircraft and was awarded the Air Medal for combat missions over Iraq and the former Yugoslavia. She is also a military correspondent for Talk Radio News Service and lives in New York City.