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Alumna Loses Home But Not Her Appalachian Spirit


BOONE – Amanda Cox, a 2001 graduate, lost her Biloxi, Miss., home during Hurricane Katrina, and one of the first things she has sought to replace is her Appalachian State University diploma.katrina117_dl.jpg“It is difficult to go through this loss and anything from the past I can replace makes it so much easier,” she wrote in an e-mail to the university.

Registrar Don Rankins has ordered her a new diploma, which she should receive in two to three weeks.

Cox’s home was destroyed when a 25-foot wall of water passed through her neighborhood. She and her husband evacuated prior to Hurricane Katrina and are OK. They are staying with her family who live nearby.

“Plans are not to rebuild as of now,” she said by e-mail. “My husband is in the Air Force and is stationed here in Biloxi. Since the base was badly damaged, plans for him staying are uncertain. By the time we could rebuild, it will be time to move again. So for the time being, we are going to live with my parents until we can either find other housing or move out of the area.”

As an Appalachian student, Cox was a history, secondary education major and was a member of Phi Mu sorority. She was also a student worker in the Department of History and Plemmons Student Union and a tutor for Upward Bound students.

“ASU was a wonderful place to get an education. I loved the small town/university feel. I talk fondly of ASU to friends and have kept in touch with many former classmates,” she wrote.

Know of other Appalachian alumni who were affected by Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Rita? Contact the Office of Public Affairs at (828) 262-2342 or


Picture Caption: Amanda Cox ’01 shares these before and after photos of her home in Biloxi, Miss., that was hit by a 25-foot wall of water during Hurricane Katrina.