The costliest hurricane in U.S. history flooded New Orleans, scattered its residents and devastated the Mississippi and Alabama coastline. More than 1,700. people were killed. In 1990, Schiavo suffered brain damage that left her in a persistent vegetative state. Eight years later, her husband asked a court to have a feeding tube removed. Her parents objected, touching off a legal battle that culminated in a political and media free-for-all. The tube was removed in March 2005; Schiavo died 13 days later.