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Community Comes Together after Flash Flooding

WINDHAM TOWNSHIP -- Rain is the last thing people in northeastern Bradford county need. Communities there got a lot of damage earlier this week from heavy rain and flash flooding.

People are cleaning up the damage and folks from surrounding communities stepped in to help.

One of the hardest hit areas is Windham Township, near Rome. Almost 40 homes are damaged from flash flooding earlier this week. The people there need help putting their lives back together and volunteers sure stepped up.

The heavy rain did not last long on Sunday night and Monday morning but people in northeastern Bradford County will remember the aftermath for a long time. Almost 40 homes were damaged by flash flooding.

Some people lost clothes and food. Others lost everything.

To help out, volunteer fire companies in southern New York collected donations for flood victims. They brought a lot of those donations to the Windham Township community center as a surprise.

"Food, toothpaste, toothbrushes, clothes, it's unbelievable the amount of stuff that's here," said Windham Township Supervisor Gale Bowen.

The entire room is filled and people can take as much as they need.

"I'm very, very grateful," said Cody Welles.

"I am super grateful," added Sarah Rafferty.

"This is a lot of stuff and there are a lot of people in need," said Nicole Rafferty. "I think it could help out more than you think. It's actually a great help right now."

There is a lost and found area at the community center. Stacks of family pictures washed up and are waiting to be claimed.

Leeonda Thoman of Windham Township found some of those pictures in her backyard. She is volunteering.

"Sorting through clothes for the kids, I felt really good to be able to just help someone today to sort through things for their little ones."

In addition to the physical donations, close to 100 people are donating their time to help clean up.

Whether they were on construction equipment or shoveling dirt, close to 100 people were cleaning up these homes in northeastern Bradford County.

"We're cleaning the debris out, getting underneath the houses, hauling it away, putting it at our site for the time being, and trying to assess the damage underneath the houses," said Gale Bowen.

Some people lost clothes and food others, including Steve Seymour, lost everything.

"I saw water come in the door and I heard a crack. My son and I went upstairs and the whole house let loose."

Seymour is feeling grateful because Windham Township supervisors organized a community cleanup.

"Everybody's pulling together, even surrounding communities are coming in like the Mennonites, construction crews," Seymour said.

"How many people came to help, complete total strangers. didn't know you but came to help, it's amazing. It's nice to see there are still people out there that are like that," said Lace Bowen.

Many of the volunteers were from a Mennonite church. Other volunteers included Neil Walker of Towanda. He owns a construction business and brought equipment.

"I couldn't imagine myself going through this. People would come help me too if I was going through this situation. I've done these flood helps before with other people and I'm going to keep doing it."

6 comments

  • Sorry

    I’m sorry for anyone that lost what they did but as for Nicole Rafferty maybe she could of told the father of her 14 year old that he’s ok oh wait she’s kept him from his father for 3 years

    • a father that played the game

      There’s no such thing as one parent keeping another parent from seeing their child unless he did something horrific. Go to court. Write a letter to the judge. That’s what I did and it worked. And I live in Bradford county also.

      • Sorry

        He did nothing bad the last time we saw him the day she was suppose to pick him up and didn’t contact him for over 24 hours then called him the bad parent then never let him see him again and he’s tried to go through court and talk to a judge but nothing has worked

      • a father that played the game

        Is the father paying his child support? If he is, and the court is still not recognizing this issue, I would suggest writing a letter to the Editor in The Daily Review. The Bradford county court system does not enjoy local publicity.

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