MCDOWELL COUNTY, WV (WVNS) — Days after the rainfall, high water continues to flow through McDowell County.
In the community of War, residents continue to recover and regroup. Multiple bridges and roadways are reduced to rubble. Basements decks and floors are caked in mud or still trying to dry. Many have spent the majority of their lives in one place, now trying to save everything they have ever known.
“I raised my two sons here, and I have lived here ever since that. And I’ve lost everything I’ve got. The whole basement is flooded, all the upstairs, the furniture, it’s all gone,” said Robin Boyd, who has lived in her house in War for more than forty years.
Late Tuesday night on July 12, 2022, Boyd received a call from her brother, telling her she needed to get home as the water engulfed her house. She left Princeton in the middle of the night to return home, through the storms and high water, unsure of what she would return to.
“Cause they said bridges and stuff were broken everywhere and I did not know what to expect when I got to mine, because I had seen how bad it was down the road,” said Boyd.
As you drive through War, on what is left of the roadway, you continue to see the damage done to vehicles and buildings that lay in the current’s path.
Larry Saunders used his truck to help a local ministry, a truck he had to pull out of the creek with the help of the community.
“We did not know what was going on, and a bank washed out from under the truck, it left the front end falling in, and when it continued to wash under it more, it just fell right in,” said Saunders.
Both Saunders and Boyd said if the rain were not bad enough, the collected debris and brush that comes along with the water make things worse and cause even more damage.
“They need to clean these creeks, they keep it full of brushes, and they will not cut the brushes through here it comes up so high you can not see no water,” said Boyd.
Boyd said she can breathe a little easier knowing she is safe, and she has an entire community to help her get back on her feet.
“We drive around and ask our neighbors if they were alright and they asked us that too it’s just like one big family war is,” said Boyd.
“There ain’t nowhere in the whole world like it, there ain’t nowhere like it to tell you the truth. And I’m proud of it,” said Saunders.
Those in need received much-needed supplies and facilities from those both inside and outside the county.
Volunteers from the Calvary Baptist church of War opened their doors to those in need of rest, warmth, recovery, a hot meal, and a working shower and restroom.
As so many are currently displaced and trying to pick up the pieces, Pastor Chad Hooker wants the area to know they are there to serve those in need.
“We try to help them find something to eat somewhere to rest for a few minutes, we want them to know that we are a part of the community and we want to do what we can to try and help,” said Hooker.
Volunteers from the Red Cross are on the ground in War and across the county as well. They went out to provide damage assessment kits, figure out who needs help and how much, provide essential resources to victims and first responders, and cleaning kits as well.