Flood leaves some homeowners devastated, others feeling lucky
Saturday afternoon, Doug Henry's home is still surrounded by water.
Dan Duling removes items from his home that suffered very little damage.
Henry looks at his home from afar.
At one point, Duling's home was completely surrounded by water. By Saturday, the water has completely receded.
Many may be breathing a sigh of relief that the flood is over, but for some homeowners in Jefferson, South Dakota, the nightmare continues.
Just a few days ago, the water was so high around Dan Duling's home, he said it looked like he lived on an island.
"The sump pump was running pretty much continuously, but it kept up with it," Duling said.
Duling came home to find that he had less than 36 hours to clear out his belongings.
"I didn't get everything out. We had to do some triage of the important things," Duling said.
Valuables and irreplaceable items like photos and electronics were some of the first to be saved, as Duling prepared for his house to be inundated by the Big Sioux River. At one point, Duling said the home was surrounded by over 11 feet of water. Still, his house suffered very little damage.
"Hard to believe, I have a basement here and no water in my basement - really lucky, beyond luck. I don't have flood insurance. I'm like the only one around here who didn't sandbag, and nothing happened to me," Duling said.
Less than one mile away, homeowner Doug Henry didn't get that lucky. After he thought things had died down, he returned home to find 8 feet of water inside his house, and Saturday afternoon, the water continued to flow down his street and around his home.
"There was water running through the kitchen of the house. You can't even imagine - all the work that I put into this acreage - gone," Henry said.
Henry spent years making this property his home. He remodeled the kitchen, put in new windows, and re-did the roof, just to name a few things. Now, he can only watch as the water sinks all his hard work.
"Pretty sick to see all the work that you've done washed away," Henry said
The only way to reach Henry's home right now is by boat because the current is moving so quickly.
"I don't know where to go from here. Nobody's been down yet. You would have to have a boat and you would still need a boat to get here today," Henry said.
At this point, all he can do is wait for the water to recede, so he can fully survey the damage left behind by mother nature.
If you want to help Henry, you can head over to any Great Southern Bank in Siouxland.
Contributions are being accepted to the "Douglas Henry Donation Account."
Great Southern Bank has locations in Sioux City, Le Mars, and Onawa.
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