METAIRIE- "For us, it was just a matter of when, not if we would evacuate."
Dr. Clark Alsfeld moved to Charleston, South Carolina to begin his medical career five years ago. Alsfeld was born and raised in the New Orleans area. His wife grew up in Lakeview.
Watching Hurricane Florence drift towards the South Carolina Coast, was terrifying.
"My wife was tracking it like a hawk and keeping an eye on everything," Dr. Alsfeld said.
Monday, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster ordered a mandatory evacuation. While he wanted to leave right away, he also knew his obligation to his patients.
"My wife wanted to hit the road and I was willing to do and ready to go. But the problem was we had a bone marrow harvest for a bone marrow transplant. That we moved up from Friday to Wednesday. So we stayed for the Bone Marrow Harvest on Wednesday morning. Left immediately after and drove up and actually didn't have much traffic coming back," Dr. Alsfeld said.
The drive took about 12 hours, with stops on the way for their two dogs Sampson and Delliah.
As Alsfeld left home, he watched the ominous clouds roll in.
"Even yesterday at noon, the winds started to pick up, the clouds started to move over. We started to see a lot of rain. Started to see some of the conditions start to move in already and some of the outer bands of the hurricane," Dr. Alsfeld said.
Alsfeld arrived in Metairie around Midnight, safe and sound next to his mother and sister.
Remembering the days following Hurricane Katrina, Alsfeld knew staying in Charleston was not an option.
"Inevitably you're going to have high winds. Inevitably there's going to be rain. My fear is that Charleston is a lot like New Orleans. Charleston's below sea level, Charleston will get flooding even with just a high tide," Dr. Alsfeld said.
But he also knows what's important in life.
"Items are replaceable. You can always get a new car. You can always get things replaced...again it's not worth risking your life to ride out the storm," Dr. Alsfeld said.
For now he'll watch the forecast, hoping to make a safe return to his hospital, and home once Florence clears.