Residents of Columbus Junction in southeast Iowa are slowly trying to get their lives back in order as the floodwaters recede. Martha Harris works in Muscatine, but the flooding has kept her from work.
Harris says she hasn’t been able to get to work for a week and a day with all the roads closed by flooding. She says it would take a drive of over 100 miles if she tried to make it. Harris says her employer has allowed her to stay home and still get paid.
There are other impacts from fighting the flooding in the town at the confluence of the Iowa and Cedar Rivers. Zach Howell says one is sore fingers from sandbagging. Howell says his fingers are so swollen, it’s hard to put his fingers together and then pull them apart. He says the fingers are swollen and stiff.
Mary Gipple-Bruney owns two businesses in the town and says even though she moved some things up to avoid flooding, there was little to be done when a levee breached. She says it was quick as the water just gushed through like a flowing river. Gipple-Bruney’s bar and grill was one of the only businesses open on Main Street. She has praise for the people who volunteered to fight the flood.
Gipple-Bruney says the outpouring of help was "just unbelievable." She says the hope is that there’ll be just as much help as the people and businesses move back in and work to recover from the floods. Gipple-Bruney doesn’t think that will be a problem as she says the town bands together when needed. Two of the Iowa National Guard soldiers that fought the flood got married Thursday in Columbus Junction.