Residents Tackle Rebuilding Without Flood Insurance

Two weeks after a deadly flood swamped Scott County, people who lost everything are working to rebuild their homes and their lives.

“None of us had flood insurance,” explained Bruce Tinsley, whose home was severely damaged. “We couldn’t get it here or if you could it was prohibitively expensive. So we pretty much just lost everything we had.”

Tinsley, and his wife Peggy are now working to rebuild their home. They’ve completely stripped it in an effort to let the wood dry out before the start piecing their home back together.

“We’re still in the mitigation stage I guess,” Tinsley said. “We’ve gutted my house and we’ve gutted my son’s house.”

Tinsley’s father-in-law, Lee Singleton, who lives next door is helping them to rebuild before he starts worrying about his own house which he said is a complete loss.

“It’s just a matter of getting [the homes] plum dried out so they make sure they won’t start mildewing or anything,” Singleton said. “Then it’s getting them fixed up and buying some furniture.”

At the end of the day, the family says they’re just lucky to have each other. Two women who lived next door died in the flooding, as well as the Scott County Sheriff Cody Carpenter and Game Warden Joel Campora who were attempting to rescue them.

“I could’ve attended seven funerals last week,” Tinsley said. ” I’m happy. I still have my wife, my in-laws, my son his wife and his daughter. That’s all I need.”

Authorities say the water level at Mill Creek was 1.2 inches higher than any previously recorded water levels at that site in history.

5NEWS is teaming up with Yeagers to provide supplies to help flood victims in Scott and LeFlore Counties rebuild damaged homes and businesses.

Starting Friday, June 14, monetary donations will be accepted at the following Yeagers Ace Hardware locations:

4910 Jenny Lind Road, Fort Smith
2619 Rogers Avenue, Fort Smith
1610 Main Street, Van Buren
814 W. Center, Greenwood

Yeagers will take the money raised and buy supplies needed at cost.

For more coverage of the Scott County flooding, click here.

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