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On Aug. 24, 1992, with winds whipping at more than 165 miles per hour, Hurricane Andrew made landfall at Homestead, Fla. and tore through the Sunshine State. Some say the damage had to be seen to be understood. At least that’s what the sister of Tom Gallagher told him.

Gallagher, then the Florida insurance commissioner (as well as the state’s treasure and fire marshal) had made some boilerplate remarks to the media following the storm about getting adjusters out to the scene and paying claims. His sister thought his statements were insensitive—that they lacked a grasp of what people had just been through.

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