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'Things were good even after the bad': Columbia man captures sign of hope after Ian on Pawleys Island

A Columbia man braved the Hurricane from Pawleys Island.
Credit: Bill Stevenson
A rainbow appears as Hurricane Ian leaves Pawleys Island on the South Carolina coast.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Columbia man Bill Stevenson went to Pawleys Island the week of Sept. 30 thinking he would meet his wife for a relaxing getaway.

He wasn't expecting it to be recorded in history as he became stranded inside his home due to Hurricane Ian's impact.

Stevenson said he's seen bad storms before - like Matthew in 2016 and Hugo in 1989.

“Just about had to rebuild the house and furnishings, most of the furnishings were gone," he said.

But never has he had to brave a storm alone and unprepared.

“I don’t want to do it again. The wind just intensified and was just blowing and howling and then one of the supports for the porch blew out and I said, 'Uh-oh," Stevenson said.

Other than wind damage, Bill said the home lost electricity. But he added that this pales in comparison to what he saw during Hugo those many years ago.

He said that when the storm was over, a symbol of hope shined through the debris over the shore - a rainbow.

“It was a beautiful rainbow and somebody emailed and said God said after the storm there’d be light," Bill said.

He made it out of the storm unscathed and is now relieved to be home in Columbia.

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