One year later, rebuilding Valley's flooded homes continues
In some of the neighborhoods hit hard by last year's flood, the silence is palpable, broken only by the occasional sound of a banging hammer or an electric saw.
One year after a series of rains pushed the Susquehanna River over the levee in East Sayre and in Athens Borough, common sights include boarded-up windows, ladders, "no trespassing" and "for sale" signs and building permits.
Properties are at various stages of the rebuilding process. Some homes look brand new, while others have yet to be touched, for a variety of reasons. Other homes are anywhere in between.
Lucinda Brown, co-chair of the Valley Relief Council, knows firsthand that as far as homes go, there is still much more work to be done. Since last fall, Brown and other VRC volunteers have brought disaster response groups and volunteer teams skilled in repairing disaster-affected homes together with the flood survivors who need their services.
A year later, those teams are still coming in, Brown said. One crew will arrive Sunday, and the first three weeks of October are booked at the rectory of the Ascension of Our Lord Ukrainian Catholic Church in East Sayre, which has served as the VRC's headquarters and a makeshift home for these groups since late November.