West Pittston Still Recovering Six Months After Floods

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Six months ago to the day parts of Luzerne County dealt with several feet of water when the Susquehanna River flooded its banks.

West Pittston was devastated on September 8, and people there are still feeling the effects today.

They said the road to recovery has been long and tough and it`s not over yet.

It`s dinner time at Agolino’s Restaurant in West Pittston and the six-month anniversary of the September eighth flooding that rocked this small community seems to be on everyone`s minds.

“My wife and I were just talking about that,” said Louis Pagnotti. “It`s been a long way, coming back, coming back. It`s slow though.”

Last September heavy rain caused the Susquehanna River to rise over its banks, covering parts of Luzerne County with several feet of water.

In West Pittston, members of the National Guard had to rescue stranded people with boats.

For Louis and Marie Pagnotti, it`s been a rough six months.

They continue to work on their home, which is still under construction.

“We`re living on our second floor because our first floor is torn apart , trying to do all the work and get it back in shape,” said Pagnotti. “It`s just been a struggle.”

Many people still cannot believe the amount of destruction the water caused.

Joe Agolino said he had seven feet of water in his restaurant.

“Everything was tipped upside down, coolers, chairs, everything, just had to throw everything out. From my kitchen, my dining room, everything and we just gutted everything, all new equipment, everything,” said Agolino. “But we came back strong,  it`s good, everybody likes it.”

And just weeks after the flood, West Pittston got walloped again.

Flash Floods on September 23 filled homes a second time.

“It came so fast as well and our basement got flooded again and it`s just been one thing after another with us with this water,” said Pagnotti.

There are still many businesses that have not reopened.

“We're grateful we were able to come back like we were,” said Charlene Maroni, owner of Char and Company Salon and Spa. “There`s a lot of businesses that weren't able to come back.”

Maroni said she had six feet of mud and water in her salon.

Still she counts herself one of the lucky ones.

“We were probably the first business back on the block because we had the luxury of being able to work out of our upstairs but now we`re fully finished, remodeled and back open,” said Maroni.