The Long Road to Recovery
FALLS — Workers were putting the finishing touches on Ken Eisenman’s new house in Falls.
His house exploded one year ago when the raging Susquehanna River pushed a propane tank into the place that blew up.
“(I’m) way to anxious (to move back in). Hopefully we’re in by the end of the month,” said Eisenman.
His new home is designed with an extra high foundation, even double doors on both sides that will let the river flow through if there’s another flood.
For Eisenman, this has been quite an ordeal.
“It’s been hard. It takes a toll on you physically. Can’t sleep, can’t eat. Just to talk about it makes your nauseous in your stomach,” said Eisenman.
Looking at the river level now in Falls it’s hard to imagine how high the river was a year ago, all the way up into the neighborhoods over there, some places had six feet in the first floor. One thing is for sure, those rebuilding over there are going higher.
Homes perched high up on pillars or raised foundations are starting to pop up. Campers are sitting on spots where other homes once stood.
There are still a lot of empty lots, but flood victim Rob Farley sees progress.
“They’re going to try to fill in the void as much as they can. You have to give them credit for not looking back, not staying stagnant and looking toward the future,” said flood victim Rob Farley.
Just down river near Harding, Carolyn Gross isn’t seeing much progress.
Riverview Village is now mostly empty, most neighbors are gone.
“Really I do (miss them). It’s pretty sad. My good girlfriend lives right over there, but it’s really lonely,” said Gross.
The flood wrecked around 30 trailers here.
Gross put up a sign “flooded and forgotten” one year ago. She lost her home.
But now, one of the few who moved to higher ground, she still feels a bit forgotten.
“Everybody says well you didn’t lose your life but they don’t know how it feels to lose everything. I have four children and stuff that’s irreplaceable that I lost and I can’t ever get it back,” said Gross.