You may not immediately remember the face of this cute little boy, who looked directly into the NBC-TV camera and spoke so eloquently about his surroundings at the New Orleans Superdome during one of the most devastating events his hometown, New Orleans, had seen.
Well, you certainly wouldn’t recognize Charles Evans today.
A lot can happen in 10 years. He’s taller, of course. And he has outgrown that cute little face and the big eyes. He wears his hair long, and has exchanged the trousers he once wore… for a skirt.
Yes. The former ‘Mister’ has begun the process to becoming a ‘Ms.’
As the ten year anniversary of Katrina unfolds, we not only get to take a look back at a devastating time; but we also get to hear how the thousands of New Orleans residents affected by Katrina have moved forward from the event.
Little Charles had been one of the hundreds of families that took shelter inside the Superdome at the time of the raging floods, along with his great-grandmother, Ophelia.
News crews caught up with those held up in Superdome in the aftermath of Katrina, and how could we forget Charles, who looked right into the camera and spoke with more passion than anyone older than him, and with the articulation of a future newscaster; exclaiming, “We just need some help out here! It is just so pitiful!”
Now all grown up at the age of 19, Charles Evans now goes by the name Arianna Evans; after he started taking female hormones this May.
He has also gone through training and is now a certified nursing assistant.
As for the transition, he told NBC News he started thinking about it in high school. But he admits his transition has been anything but easy.
“There are folks who are against it and attack our kind,” he said.
Wanda Felton, the investment banker that supported young Charles and his great-grandmother emotionally and financially after Katrina, continues to offer support to him and says, “I think it was always apparent. I was never uncomfortable with it — it was just who he was.”
(Photo: NBC News Screenshot)