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'Don't give up,' Families living along FM 1442 near Orangefield beginning rebuild after Imelda

KBMT-TV Beaumont-Port Arthur, logo KBMT-TV Beaumont-Port Arthur, 9/27/2019 Tyler Seggerman
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Families in Orange County are tackling the recovery process in different ways.

Cow Bayou runs through FM 1442 and water is still visible in some spots.

For homeowners living in Terry Estates, they had to wait a week before the water receded.

RELATED: 'Move forward,' Orangefield family dealing with standing water, rebuilding home after Imelda

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On Wednesday, Andrea Stephenson drove to her house for the first time. 

"It's just really frustrating because you want to get to work, you want to start getting things dried out," said Stephenson. "You just have to wait and be patient, nobody can come help you really if your neighbors bring you in by boat."

Her neighbor told 12News that he measured 32 inches of rain outside his home following Imelda.

"We had about ten inches of water. So, we're going to have to gut everything and start all from scratch; cabinets, walls, showers, you name it," said Stephenson.

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Down the road, Gerald Cockrell's house flooded for the fourth time.

"I don't think we'll do the extent we did last time," said Cockrell. "I don't know what we'll be able to do with the house, we'll just have to wait and see."

He lives along Ivy Lane and is not pleased with how the drainage held up. 

"There's a concern about this area because the next time we get a good rain, it's going to flood again there's no doubt about it," said Cockrell.

Imelda may have past, but her wrath remains in some areas.

Water continues to surround the home of Allie Davis near West Claire Drive.

"My husband had to gut it out, redo everything, remodel the whole house to make it a home. Here we go again," said Davis. 

Her family has been staying at a hotel since the storm. 

"Not ideal, but it's better than nothing," said Davis. "Better than being without a roof over my head."

Despite the damage, the thought of moving away hasn't crossed her mind. 

"I don't want to go nowhere else, that's our place and we're not going to give up," said Davis. "I just want everybody to know to keep their head up, don't give up as hard as it is."

The Orange County Drainage District will host a town hall meeting on Monday, September 30, at 6:30 p.m., according to the Mauriceville Heritage Association.

It will be located at the Top Deck Fabrication Shop, located at the intersection of Hwy 62 and Hwy 12. (11041 Hwy 12, Orange TX 77632) 


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