Emmetsburg RAGBRAI Committee helps Rock Valley flood victims - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Emmetsburg RAGBRAI Committee helps Rock Valley flood victims


Several towns in Northwest Iowa are gearing up for thousands of bike riders to pedal through in less than a month, but one city needed some extra help.

"I just look forward to seeing a beautiful home, once all this is done," Rock Valley, Iowa Flood Victim Angela Castaneda said

It's been almost two weeks since historic flooding in Rock Valley, Iowa, and it's felt like a very long time for homeowner Angela Castaneda, who watched as volunteers removed sheet rock from her walls.

"A lot of our stuff, we had just remodeled last year and previous years, so it was kind of hard just to see damage," Castaneda said.

And, for outsiders who came from as far Grand Rapids, Michigan, it's hard to fathom the devastation.

"It hurts. It does. You can't start to describe some of the feelings. You walk into a house and their whole life is open to the public," Andy Vandermeer, with World Renew Disaster Response Services, from Grand Rapids, Michigan, said.

"As you're driving through the town, the town looks pretty good, but when you get into the homes, that's where you see the devastation.You see where the flooding took place," Emmetsburg RAGBRAI Committee Member Lynn Schultes said.

Schultes, along with many other RAGBRAI committee members from Emmetsburg traveled about 90 miles to help out in Castaneda's home and many others around the neighborhood.

"We know that anybody could be in this predicament. We just know that if anything like this would happen in our community, people from Rock Valley would come and help. It just makes a guy feel good," Schultes said.

Castaneda said strangers and community members have helped point her in the right direction to get her home back to normal.

"We're keeping forward, just looking at all the help that we've been getting, as far as volunteers, advice. We didn't know to remove the sheet rock and installation," Castaneda said.

Castaneda said she's in support of the thousands of cyclists who will be riding through because it will bring in funds for flood victims. And, Shultes said as a fellow RAGBRAI town, they're thankful Rock Valley is still kicking off the ride.

"They're still willing to host RAGBRAI and that says a lot about their character.We want to assist them in their endeavor. To change locations at this point in the game would be very difficult for the RAGBRAI committees throughout the state," Schultes said.

Schultes added how RAGBRAI is a great way to showcase Iowa and all the wonderful people who live in the state, as well as cities like Rock Valley.

City leaders in Rock Valley said RAGBRAI preparation are almost complete, and all that's left to do is line up the volunteers.


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