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Volunteers Rebuild Flooded Homes

It’s been more than six months since flood waters devastated much of our area.

In Bradford County rebuilding continues and some flood victims are getting a helping hand.

New support beams are going up in Jeremy Clark’s flood-damaged home near Towanda.

Six months after nearly four feet of water filled his first floor his home the walls are stripped to the studs.

For the past few days a group of volunteers from Chicago has been helping him gut his home as part of the Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Team.

“We’ve been flying by the seat of our pants,” said volunteer Sandy Roberts. “We’re sort of weekend warriors, but we’ve picked up a lot of skills along the way.”

Many in the group have helped rebuild homes in New Orleans, but it’s Charles Vaughn’s first trip to a disaster area at 78 years old.

“It’s important to me. I’ve got good health. I feel as though I want to do something for someone who needs me,” Vaughn said.

Homeowner Jeremy Clark said rebuilding after the flood has been a stressful process, but all the extra helping hands, make the work much easier.

“This group has just been a blessing. Not just with the physical work, but it’s just an emotional pick-up as well. We would be weeks behind, and we’re only into the third day of them being here,” Clark said.

At Jim Campbell’s house in Athens the rest of the 11 volunteers are busy hanging drywall.

Campbell said he had more than three feet of water and a foot of mud in his home.

“They’re doing an awful lot. I really appreciate it. Before they came, we were behind,” Campbell said of the volunteers.

The volunteers said all the hard work, all the splinters and more are worth it.

“We get to help people rebuild their homes and we get to see the joy of them being able to go back into a place that months ago looked like nobody was ever going to live in it again, and that’s really nice,” said volunteer Brooks Darrah.

The volunteers will continue helping the flood victims until they head back home to Chicago this weekend.


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