Mary Kate Tuohy and her brother, Thomas Dockery, grew up at the beach in Rockaway Park, New York, the southernmost part of New York City. Their house, which their parents bought in 1968, passed on to Mary Kate and her husband, JT, when the elder Dockerys passed away. For two generations, the home had been a mecca for neighborhood gatherings, including the night of October 29, 2012, when friends and family gathered to ride out Hurricane Sandy.
Hurricane Sandy turned into Superstorm Sandy, causing widespread devestation along the East Coast, especially along the New York and New Jersey coasts. The Tuohys' house was flooded up to the ground floor for the first time in its history, and the couple and their friends found themselves dealing with a disaster like nothing the neighborhood had ever faced before.