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Remembering the Superdome's role during Hurricane Katrina

16 PHOTOS
Katrina 10 year: Life inside the Domes - Rebuilding the Superdome
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Remembering the Superdome's role during Hurricane Katrina
NEW ORLEANS - AUGUST 29: The roof of the Louisiana Superdome is seen damaged due to the strong winds of Hurricane Katrina August 29, 2005 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Katrina made landfall this morning as a Category 4 strom with sustained winds in excess of 135 mph near Empire, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - CIRCA 2005: Lawrence and Vanessa Arnollie take shelter in the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, which hit the Gulf Coast states on August 29th, 2005. After three days with no running water and intense heat and humidity the shelter has become unsanitary and unsafe. Officials prepare evacuation despite the flood water surrounding the building. (Photo by Michael Appleton/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - CIRCA 2005: Light streaming down through the ceiling of the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana illuminates a ragged crowd of refugees taking shelter at the arena in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, which hit the Gulf Coast states on August 29th, 2005. (Photo by Michael Appleton/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
IN FLIGHT- AUGUST 30: The damaged roof from Hurricane Katrina of the Louisiana Superdome is seen August 30, 2005 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Approximately 100 people are feared dead and estimates put the property loss at nearly $30 billion as Hurricane Katrina could become the costliest storm in US history. It is estimated that 80 percent of New Orleans is under flood waters as levees begin to break and leak around Lake Ponchartrain. (Photo by Dave Einsel/Getty Images)
New Orleans, UNITED STATES: The last of the Hurricane Katrina survivors who used the Superdome in New Orleans as shelter wait 02 September, 2005. The New Orleans sports arena that housed hurricane refugees for five days in lawless squalor was finally emptied Friday, though many remained stranded with no immediate prospect of evacuation. While relieved to leave the confines of the Superdome, where many testified to pitch-dark nights of gunfire, rioting and rape, the evacuees found the devastated city outside offered little in the way of comfort. AFP PHOTO/JAMES NIELSEN (Photo credit should read JAMES NIELSEN/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - MAY 25: Painter Anselmo Martinez, originally from Mexico, goes over plans as work continues on the Superdome, which was damaged by Hurricane Katrina, May 25, 2006 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The stadium is scheduled to be repaired and 'football-ready' in four months for the New Orleans Saints home opener against the Atlanta Falcons September 25, 2006. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - JULY 18: Workers continue to repair the dome of the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana, on July 18, 2006. Superdome was severely damages in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. (Photo by Andy Nelson/The Christian Science Monitor via Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - MAY 25: Work continues on the Superdome, which was damaged by Hurricane Katrina, May 25, 2006 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The stadium is scheduled to be repaired and 'football-ready' in four months for the New Orleans Saints home opener against the Atlanta Falcons September 25, 2006. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - JULY 25: Work continues on the Louisiana Superdome to repair damage from Hurricane Katrina July 25, 2006 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Superdome is scheduled to open for the first New Orleans Saints home game on September 25. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - JULY 25: Rows of new seats are covered to protect them during construction inside the Louisiana Superdome July 25, 2006 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Following the damage from Hurricane Katrina, the Superdome is scheduled to reopen for the New Orleans Saints first home game on September 25, 2006. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - JUNE 13: This is a satellite image of downtown New Orleans, Louisiana collected on June 13, 2006, New Orleans Louisiana. (Photo DigitalGlobe via Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints huddles up his team during the first quarter of the Monday Night Football game against the Atlanta Falcons on September 25, 2006 at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Tonight's game marks the first time since Hurricane Katrina struck last August, that the Superdome, which served as a temporary shelter to thousands of stranded victims in the wake of Katrina, has played host to an NFL game. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - SEPTEMBER 25: Wide receiver Devery Henderson #19 of the New Orleans Saints is challenged by Demorrio Williams #51 of the Atlanta Falcons during the first quarter of the Monday Night Football game on September 25, 2006 at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Tonight's game marks the first time since Hurricane Katrina struck last August, that the Superdome, which served as a temporary shelter to thousands of stranded victims in the wake of Katrina, has played host to an NFL game. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - SEPTEMBER 25: Runningback Reggie Bush #25 waves to the fans he leaves the field after the Saints 23-3 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in the Monday Night Football game on September 25, 2006 at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Tonight's game marks the first time since Hurricane Katrina struck last August, that the Superdome, which served as a temporary shelter to thousands of stranded victims in the wake of Katrina, has played host to an NFL game. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates with teammate Jammal Brown #70 after their team's 23-3 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in the Monday Night Football game on September 25, 2006 at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Tonight's game marks the first time since Hurricane Katrina struck last August, that the Superdome, which served as a temporary shelter to thousands of stranded victims in the wake of Katrina, has played host to an NFL game. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
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by JOHN DORN

The Mercedes-Benz Superdome is a landmark in the city of New Orleans. During Hurricane Katrina, then known as the Louisiana Superdome, the arena was used as a "shelter of last resort" to the thousands unable to evacuate the ravaged city.

The thought was novel, and actually carried out on prior occasions. But order was disparate, and resources became harder to come by as time passed. The roof, which was built to withstand most of what nature could bring, became torn and pierced.

SEE MORE: Special coverage on the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina

According to the AP, two separate holes were torn into the roof, "each about 15 to 20 feet (6.1 m) long and 4 to 5 feet (1.5 m) wide." Water made its way into elevator shafts and other areas, rendering the Superdome effectively useless -- in terms of shelter and home to the New Orleans Saints.

By Aug. 30, crime and death made its way from outside the arena to the inside, where there were reported suicides, rape, vandalism, drug dealing and gang activity. What was one of the city's proudest monuments had become a depiction of just how destructed New Orleans had become.

But as it eventually regained its form, new life was pumped into the desperate city.

The Saints played their entire season splitting their home games between the Alamodome, Tiger Stadium and Giants Stadium and four college football games were forced to find new hosts as the dome underwent fixes.

SEE MORE: How Tulane athletes came together

But those fixes were finished in time for the 2006 football season, and when the Superdome finally returned, it was as if the city itself had been rebuilt. Fans flocked to the venue for its first Monday Night Football game on Sept. 25, 2006 to watch their Saints take on the Atlanta Falcons. What they saw was nothing short of magical.

Early in the first quarter, with the crowd already buzzing, Steve Gleason broke free to block a Falcons punt and return it for a crowd-energizing touchdown. It was the first score of a 23-3 route for the Saints and a first-place finish that took them all the way to that year's NFC Championship Game.

Today, the Superdome stands proud as a symbol for what New Orleans has overcome. Ten years after Katrina threatened the dome -- and the entire city -- take time to remember how much the people of New Orleans have overcome to reach where they are today.

A CITY AND ITS TEAMS, LINKED FOREVER
Katrina 10 Years Later: A City and Its Teams Forever Linked
More Katrina coverage on AOL.com:Facts about the impact of Hurricane Katrina:
Reliving the New Orleans Saints' emotional 2005 seasonMore than 15,000 refugees sought shelter in the Superdome
Meet the man who brought food back to the Lower 9th WardThe storm's final death toll was 1,836
Read Full Story

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