Area victims survey damage to homes



Survivors must begin the long task of recovery.
LISBON -- On the day after the flood, the residents of Caldwell Street picked through what was left of their things and surveyed the extent of their misfortune.
This modest neighborhood on Lisbon's East Side was especially hard-hit by the Friday night deluge that caused widespread, devastating flooding.
At least three houses on the street vanished in the surging water. On Saturday, residents who had fled returned.
Michael and Sue Lewis stood outside their home, which had remained moored to its foundation but was wrecked just the same.
Inside, the water had risen to the top of her stove, Sue said.
"What are we going to do?" Lewis said. "We have no insurance."
Drove to safety
A truck driver, Lewis used his rig to drive him and his wife to safety as the water from Mill Site Creek rose menacingly around their home late Friday.
Walt Best, a neighbor, gestured toward his house, then corrected himself. "What was my house," he said.
The street was awash in ruin.
Trees were down. The water had lifted the roadway in places and shattered it into chunks resembling pieces of a giant jigsaw puzzle.
Cars rested at odd angles in the grass. Children's bicycles lay partly submerged in a puddle. Standing askew in a sodden lawn was a statue of the Virgin Mary.
A man carried his television down the road, saying it was about all that was left worth saving.
The wreckage wasn't limited to Caldwell Street.
Near Elkton
East of Lisbon, near Elkton, Wayne and Marilynn Wickline, struggled to remove a soaked, rolled up carpet from their basement.
"This used to be white," Marilynn said of the mud-colored material.
Wayne had been watching television about 9 p.m. Friday, paying little mind to the rain, until he looked outside and a flash of lightning revealed that his yard was flooded.
Water poured inside the house along state Route 154.
"It was coming through our basement so fast it moved the freezer," Marilynn said.
Ronald Mills, who lives nearby, spoke of losing his home but keeping his life.
Water had crashed through the windows. Mills grabbed some clothing and some medicine. Then he and his wife fled.
On Saturday, looking at his house in the sunlight, he pronounced it unsalvageable.
Mills noted how the firewood he had already cut and stacked for the coming winter had been swept away. Then he laughed.
"I ain't going to need it now," he said.

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